Current position of the NDP with Greens voting for BDS and Trudeau courting unions

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Sean in Ottawa
Current position of the NDP with Greens voting for BDS and Trudeau courting unions

For my part I found the CBC analysis about Trudeau courting unions interesting in that it is being presented as newsworthy. But there should be no surprise here. This is the one thing -- the only thing -- both parties agreed on a couple years ago. Remember when the parties each had voices calling for a merger and each party's leader said there would be none. Each party promised to "unite the left" leaving the other outside.

And so we had a campaign that in Chantal Hébert's analysis went head to head leaving a generation of at least one party’s leading lights in defeat. Those were the rules of the duel. Some might say, a most ridiculous duel.

This is where the analysis of the last campaign must start. The two parties had an option to merge, and chose not to. They knew they were facing a major long-term battle for viability with each other more important than the immediate battle with the Conservatives. They opted for a winner-take-all battle. Voters were frustrated with both parties but accepted that there was going to have to be a choice between the two in order to unseat Harper. The membership of both parties solidly back a winner-take-all campaign.

In that campaign the Liberals made sure they ran to the left (in rhetoric if not entirely in policy) of the NDP and with them doing that, the NDP quite easily ran to the right of the Liberals. Mulcair clearly overplayed his hand appearing further to the right of the Liberals than anyone needed or wanted. The Thatcher quote symbolized this and it clearly meant Liberals had prepared for this and the research had been done. Each party intended to leave the other no ground to stand on. The result was going to leave one party with a crisis of identity.

The idea that Mulcair could stay on was theatre. He bet his entire career on a move that if it had succeeded would have ended the Liberal party and left the NDP as the strongest party in Canada. But in failure he had no credible strategy as leader. Trudeau did the same -- if he had lost to Mulcair his ability to survive as leader would have been heavily compromised if not to the degree of Mulcair.

There were differences in what they were gambling. For Mulcair, a loss meant he absolutely could not continue as leader of the NDP but his party, while smaller, could survive. The only thing that kills a party on a wing is a merger.

For Trudeau, he might have been able to hang on a little longer as his party was tired of divisive leadership races, he had brought in enough people to support him and he had lower expectations given how low the Liberals were. But the Liberal party itself was at risk. A party in the centre will vanish if there is no centre ground available (unlike a wing party). So for the Liberals the gamble was existence. For the NDP it was Mulcair’s leadership and their contender status.

If Mulcair's gamble to the centre had won electoral approval, there is little doubt that the rump of Liberals would have split as the NDP would have campaigned looking like a party they would recognize.

A loss to the Conservatives, with that government left in power, would have caused a revolt in both parties demanding merger. A merger probably would then have been inevitable as this loss would have required a stalemate between the NDP and Liberals. The voters were clear they would have none of that. This is why they moved so quickly from the NDP as the favorite to the Liberals with no wasted time in the middle.

So knowing this, the leaders and the parties presented campaigns and platforms designed to beat each other first but needing to reduce Harper at least to minority. With Harper at a minority, they both knew they would have to work together to create a new government, something they hated, but this was preferable than a merger. They both felt confident that a campaign primarily against each other would at least still reduce Harper to a minority such that they could go to a plan B coalition rather than merger and preserve their parties as independent entities. A loss to the Liberals would end Mulcair's career at least and a loss to the NDP would probably have ended the Liberal party.

This brings us to today. The NDP, having lost that mega winner-take-all battle is severely weakened but not dead (due to the fact that it is on a wing). So no surprise that the Liberals want to consolidate the NDP loss by going after their union support which they have been able to take chunks of before.

This also explains the position of Elizabeth May. Her party in approving BDS was striking to a progressive left -- passing the weakened NDP on the issue. This is a bigger story than people realize. If they succeed several things could happen. First the NDP would in fact be in a fight for survival no longer being a wing party as they would be squeezed between the two.

The Greens historically in Canada have been a somewhat Libertarian right of centre environment party with the NDP the left environment party. If, in a moment of NDP weakness, the Greens moved to being a left environment party, and took up room to the left of the NDP the NDP would be in crisis. Of course this Green Party would not be able to fit with May. It would no longer just be a Green Party, it would be the ultimate in parties: a sustainability party understanding the relationship between environmental sustainability and social sustainability. A party for the times, you might say, founded on the understanding that one sustainability cannot exist without the other. May is the NDP’s ally here. With her career at stake, she probably can extinguish the Green Party’s flicker of being progressive and keep them in their place. If she can’t, the Green Party could quite possibly take from the NDP most of what the Liberals have not already taken. They could go on with a new leader to challenge the Liberals.

The NDP are deeply wounded and the Liberals can keep them down for a while by tacking left (although there are indications that they are more likely to move back to the centre-right in a number of polices while rhetorically pretending different). But it is the Greens, a party that is small and nimble enough that it could be remade with a new leader that provides the more immediate than realized long-term threat to the NDP.

There is no room for May in this scenario so she is fighting it. But at the end of the day, this is the best hope for her party and her movement. Now, May is literally in the way. If May were to leave in the next year or so and a new, dynamic interesting, and most importantly, left leader, were to emerge, the NDP could end up in the worst shape it has ever been.

The NDP may think it is in an existential struggle with the Liberals but it has largely lost that battle for this generation. The recent BDS vote in the Green Party suggests it may enter one with the Greens. If May were to retire and the Greens opted to choose a leader who walked to them from the left of the NDP – things could move much quicker than anyone realizes. Imagine if someone of the stature of Libby Davies or Avi Lewis jumped at a Green Party Leadership. They would have unified the NDP-Green divide leaving the NDP establishment outside.

And those are the rules of the new duel.

To be fair, a good many would not see that bus coming until it hit them. This initial BDS vote in the Green party rank and file is the only warning they might get.

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

I'm not saying this to heckle, but realistically, how important do you think that Israel/Palestine is to the average Canadian voter?

Which of these do you think is LESS important to the average voter than Israel/Palestine?

1.  Jobs

2.  The environment

3. "Terrorism"

4. Which candidate they'd like to have a beer with

5. the Oilsands

6. Trade agreements

7. The party they've always voted for

8. Equal marriage

9. A balanced budget

10. Home mail delivery

Pondering

The Liberals and NDP are only left in relation to the Conservatives. Both the Liberals and the NDP accept the basic neoliberal framework. It's practically propaganda to call them parties of the left. At best they are both centrist parties.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
This is where the analysis of the last campaign must start. The two parties had an option to merge, and chose not to. They knew they were facing a major long-term battle for viability with each other more important than the immediate battle with the Conservatives.

That is the media narrative. At no point has either the Liberals or NDP been non-viable as a party. Both have consistently remained larger than the Greens. The media narrative was that neither could beat the Conservatives alone but that narrative was false. Both parties were individually able to defeat Harper.

The NDP hoped it could finish off the Liberals by moving to the centre they just moved so far to the right that they went right past the Liberals.

The Liberals are not a leftist party. They take policies from both the left and the right.

I didn't take a poll but from the people I spoke to all three parties are viewed as centrist moderate parties maybe with the Conservatives and NDP leaning slightly right and left but still basically all the same.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
They opted for a winner-take-all battle. Voters were frustrated with both parties but accepted that there was going to have to be a choice between the two in order to unseat Harper. The membership of both parties solidly back a winner-take-all campaign.

I didn't see any frustration from voters on the parties not merging. For voters, this was just another typical election in which they chose the party they thought could best lead Canada economically and administratively. The ABC campaigns never really took off. The majority was not desperate to get rid of Harper. The NDP thought they could succeed with the same smear tactics as Harper and bought their own propaganda that Trudeau was some callow youth that could be ignored. Mulcair's arrogance came to a head when he refused to debate unless Harper was present putting an end to the debate on women's issues and the possibility of a network debate. The NDP is totally an establishment party now regardless of its members.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
Each party intended to leave the other no ground to stand on. The result was going to leave one party with a crisis of identity.

The NDP tried to move so far to the centre that there would be no room for the Liberals. Instead the Liberals held the centre and the NDP left themselves superfluous because they deserted the left.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The idea that Mulcair could stay on was theatre. He bet his entire career on a move that if it had succeeded would have ended the Liberal party and left the NDP as the strongest party in Canada.

The strongest centrist party. There would no longer be a party on the left. The NDP would be the Liberal Party with a different name and the left would have been destroyed for at least a generation.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
For Trudeau, he might have been able to hang on a little longer as his party was tired of divisive leadership races, he had brought in enough people to support him and he had lower expectations given how low the Liberals were. But the Liberal party itself was at risk. A party in the centre will vanish if there is no centre ground available (unlike a wing party). So for the Liberals the gamble was existence. For the NDP it was Mulcair’s leadership and their contender status.

Well with the left vacated the Liberals could easily have attacked the NDP from the left. The NDP promised to balance the budget all four years and deliver national daycare and pharmacare all of which they would have failed at. The NDP would have been dead after one term.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
If Mulcair's gamble to the centre had won electoral approval, there is little doubt that the rump of Liberals would have split as the NDP would have campaigned looking like a party they would recognize.

Yes, and that would have completed the NDP's transformation into a centrist establishment party. The left would no longer have a home.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
A loss to the Conservatives, with that government left in power, would have caused a revolt in both parties demanding merger. A merger probably would then have been inevitable as this loss would have required a stalemate between the NDP and Liberals.

Yes, leading to a single centrist party, and no home for the left.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The voters were clear they would have none of that. This is why they moved so quickly from the NDP as the favorite to the Liberals with no wasted time in the middle.

The swing voters I talked to saw little difference between the NDP and the Liberals so they were willing to swing either way. The NDP never had them on policy. For awhile the public bought the NDP/Conservative line that Trudeau couldn't do the job of PM. By default that left Mulcair or Harper. Had the NDP been leading as a leftist party Trudeau's rise would not have shaken their support but that wasn't the case. The NDP was running as a replacement for the Liberal party. The NDP campaign hung on personality politics not ideology or dramatic policy differenciation. That made it a contest between leaders. Having bought their own propaganda they decided the Liberals weakest link was Trudeau. I recall Nicky proclaiming that Mulcair's support was solid built on his superior qualities in comparison to Trudeau.

The NDP chose to run a shallow campaign rooted in personality politics and cynical choices. It depended on the public perceiving Trudeau as lightweight incapable of being PM.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
So knowing this, the leaders and the parties presented campaigns and platforms designed to beat each other first but needing to reduce Harper at least to minority.

Trudeau's campaign was designed to beat the Conservatives and the NDP. From day 1 Trudeau's intent was to form government not just reduce Harper to a minority. He took high risk high reward positions becoming the agent of change. He ignored the political pundits and sold himself and his policies to the Canadian people. He is still doing it.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
They both felt confident that a campaign primarily against each other would at least still reduce Harper to a minority such that they could go to a plan B coalition rather than merger and preserve their parties as independent entities.

The whole merger thing was never more than a media narrative. I don't think either party ever even toyed with a merger. Both parties were willing to absorb the other when they were in the lead and the other party was weakened. That isn't the same thing as a merger.

While some moderate NDPers might have stayed with a merged Liberal/NDP party core members would not have. A merger never made any sense. Moderate members could go Liberal without a merger, and it seems many have. Moving so far to the centre to win made it easy for supporters to switch.

I recall NDP supporters saying here that it was okay for me to be critical of the NDP not being far enough left but not if I was supporting the Liberals. The NDP convinced me they are a centrist party so that is what I judged them as. I was not choosing between a right or centre party and a left wing party. I was choosing between two centrist parties. If there had been a leftist party available to vote for I would have voted for them.

NDP supporters try to have it both ways. Be a centrist party but get credit for being the party farthest left that all progressives must support or they aren't progressives. The NDP tried it in BC, and in Ontario, and federally.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
This brings us to today. The NDP, having lost that mega winner-take-all battle is severely weakened but not dead (due to the fact that it is on a wing).

The NDP isn't on a wing anymore. They are centrist. Unless they move left they don't have a reason to exist. CUPE and the Council of Canadians are fighting CETA while provincial NDP governments collude with the federal government making secret deals that undermine our democracy. That is not leftist.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
This also explains the position of Elizabeth May. Her party in approving BDS was striking to a progressive left -- passing the weakened NDP on the issue. This is a bigger story than people realize. If they succeed several things could happen. First the NDP would in fact be in a fight for survival no longer being a wing party as they would be squeezed between the two.

You missed the story. Regardless of what the Greens do the NDP's unquestioning support of Israel is evidence that it is already no longer a left wing party. They have become an establishment party that accepts the basic neoliberal economic system. Like the Liberals they support social programs to ease the pain while supporting the trade deals that cause it. The NDP's weak criticism of the corporate rights aspect ignores the many other ways that these trade deals undermine workers.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The NDP are deeply wounded and the Liberals can keep them down for a while by tacking left (although there are indications that they are more likely to move back to the centre-right in a number of polices while rhetorically pretending different). But it is the Greens, a party that is small and nimble enough that it could be remade with a new leader that provides the more immediate than realized long-term threat to the NDP.

Even you describe the NDP as a party that will only move left to defeat other parties.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
There is no room for May in this scenario so she is fighting it. But at the end of the day, this is the best hope for her party and her movement. Now, May is literally in the way. If May were to leave in the next year or so and a new, dynamic interesting, and most importantly, left leader, were to emerge, the NDP could end up in the worst shape it has ever been.

Yes, because the NDP has moved so far to the centre that it is easy for parties to be on the left of it.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The NDP may think it is in an existential struggle with the Liberals but it has largely lost that battle for this generation. The recent BDS vote in the Green Party suggests it may enter one with the Greens. If May were to retire and the Greens opted to choose a leader who walked to them from the left of the NDP – things could move much quicker than anyone realizes. Imagine if someone of the stature of Libby Davies or Avi Lewis jumped at a Green Party Leadership. They would have unified the NDP-Green divide leaving the NDP establishment outside.

That's right. The NDP can no longer claim to be the left wing party of Canada demanding the alligence of all progressives.

I saw two centrist parties and chose the one that would deliver the most benefit to me and other Canadians under neoliberalism.

Sean in Ottawa

Pondering --I spent time unpacking one long illogical post of yours tonight. I can't spend the time on this one. This is written so badly and with so many not relevant or simply wrong things in it that I can only conclude that you do this to tire people out.

Example, I have no clue where this comes from or what you consider to be a source for this:

Even you describe the NDP as a party that will only move left to defeat other parties.

I am too tired to pull out the knots in this post.

Your paragraph begining with "You missed the story" is a bizarre misreading of what I said. It has no relation to any of the conclusions I drew.

 

Rev Pesky

Pondering wrote:
...Mulcair's arrogance came to a head when he refused to debate unless Harper was present putting an end to the debate on women's issues and the possibility of a network debate.

There is no doubt this was an extremely stupid move. The NDP had a free chance to take a pretty serious swipe at Harper and the Conservatives, and they turned it down. I don't know whether it was Mulcair or his 'team', but whoever made this decision should be sent back to political kindergarten. Man! A free chance to highlight NDP women's issues policies, at the same time stressing how the Conservatives thought so little of women they didn't bother to show up...

I remember shaking my head over this one. I think it was at this point I started to realize the election was lost to the NDP.

Debater

I can kind of understand where Mulcair & his advisers were coming from.  They thought they were running a frontrunner's campaign.  They thought it would be 'safe' to avoid some of the debates.  And they also thought they were hurting Trudeau & the Liberals by marginalizing them.

However, what Mulcair & his team forgot was that the NDP only had a small lead, and it was mainly as a result of the Notley Wave in Alberta.  It wasn't because everyone suddenly loved Mulcair.  Prior to Notley, Mulcair & the NDP had trailed Trudeau (& Harper) for 2 years.  The NDP had performed badly in the 2013 & 2014 by-elections.  The NDP became the frontrunner because of Notley, but Mulcair thought it was because of him.

The NDP overlooked 2 other factors:

1) Trudeau & the Liberals had the potential to come back with a good campaign

2) Harper was prepared to play dirty (eg. the niqab)

But Mulcair & his team didn't seem to know how to respond to Trudeau's recovery or Harper's dirty niqab gambit.  As a result, the NDP dropped from 1st to 3rd.

Aristotleded24

Rev Pesky wrote:

Pondering wrote:
...Mulcair's arrogance came to a head when he refused to debate unless Harper was present putting an end to the debate on women's issues and the possibility of a network debate.

There is no doubt this was an extremely stupid move. The NDP had a free chance to take a pretty serious swipe at Harper and the Conservatives, and they turned it down. I don't know whether it was Mulcair or his 'team', but whoever made this decision should be sent back to political kindergarten. Man! A free chance to highlight NDP women's issues policies, at the same time stressing how the Conservatives thought so little of women they didn't bother to show up...

I remember shaking my head over this one. I think it was at this point I started to realize the election was lost to the NDP.

Especially since the NDP tends to win over public support when its message is presented unfiltered, such as in the debates. Unfrotunately, by effectively cancelling the consortium debates, they blew their chance to debate in front of a large audience. The debates they did attend didn't have nearly as many people watching, and so people formed their opinions based on the filtered perceptions of the pundits.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Justin Trudau has, in my opinion, succeeded in turning federal politics in Canada into a popularity contest. Average voter engagement on issues has plummeted in the 10 months since the October 2015 election.

If Trudeau's popularity holds through 2019, then I would expect voter engagement in the 2019 election to plummet, as Trudeau supporters would feel confident in re-electing the Liberals without paying any attention to what the parties are offering on policy.

The NDP and the Conservatives are both in a very difficult position. Both parties have lost their leaders from the 2015 election, and both are going to struggle to engage voters beyond their core supporters in their upcoming leadership contests. Once these parties pick their leaders, they'll struggle to gain name recognition in the current climate.

If Trudau has an achilles heel, it's probably pipelines. If the Liberals approve either the Kinder-Morgan or Energy East pipelines, it could hurt the Liberals popularity in BC and Quebec respectively. Though keep in mind that the Liberals have enjoyed a surge in popularity since the last election, so their popularity could take a hit in BC and/or Quebec and still wind up being what it was in 2015.

The greens are still largely viewed as a fringe party. The BDS resolution that passed at their recent convention, while welcome to this babbler, doesn't change this fact.

If the NDP picks another centrist Liberal-lite leader, they could bleed some support to the greens. My guess though is tha this bleed would be at a level where it would hurt the NDP more than it would help the Greens.

The other factor is what changes are made to the electoral system for the 2019 election. These changes could either help to cement the Liberals dominant position, or help the NDP and Conservatives  (and possibly the Greens) maintain a larger presence.

Sean in Ottawa

Rev Pesky wrote:

Pondering wrote:
...Mulcair's arrogance came to a head when he refused to debate unless Harper was present putting an end to the debate on women's issues and the possibility of a network debate.

There is no doubt this was an extremely stupid move. The NDP had a free chance to take a pretty serious swipe at Harper and the Conservatives, and they turned it down. I don't know whether it was Mulcair or his 'team', but whoever made this decision should be sent back to political kindergarten. Man! A free chance to highlight NDP women's issues policies, at the same time stressing how the Conservatives thought so little of women they didn't bother to show up...

I remember shaking my head over this one. I think it was at this point I started to realize the election was lost to the NDP.

We had some major debates here about this. I was very upset with the NDP over it but was told by a couple very strong NDP partisans that this was what being a front-runner looks like -- that all would be well. It wasn't. The seeds for the loss -- if they did not start there -- were firmly planted. Peple capable of impartiality could see soemthign seriously wrong with the NDP leadership there and some sounded an alarm only to be told they were being disloyal.

This is the crap that made me back away from the NDP on the double.

Sean in Ottawa

Debater wrote:

I can kind of understand where Mulcair & his advisers were coming from.  They thought they were running a frontrunner's campaign.  They thought it would be 'safe' to avoid some of the debates.  And they also thought they were hurting Trudeau & the Liberals by marginalizing them.

However, what Mulcair & his team forgot was that the NDP only had a small lead, and it was mainly as a result of the Notley Wave in Alberta.  It wasn't because everyone suddenly loved Mulcair.  Prior to Notley, Mulcair & the NDP had trailed Trudeau (& Harper) for 2 years.  The NDP had performed badly in the 2013 & 2014 by-elections.  The NDP became the frontrunner because of Notley, but Mulcair thought it was because of him.

The NDP overlooked 2 other factors:

1) Trudeau & the Liberals had the potential to come back with a good campaign

2) Harper was prepared to play dirty (eg. the niqab)

But Mulcair & his team didn't seem to know how to respond to Trudeau's recovery or Harper's dirty niqab gambit.  As a result, the NDP dropped from 1st to 3rd.

I disagree on two points:

First I do not think that this approach works to help a front runner campaign. Sometimes we see this attitdue but I think it is always a liability but some campaigns are so strong that others think it is somethign that actually helped. Also some parties can do things others can't becuase their potential voters have different standards. Someone looking for an NDP type vote is not going to ignore a women's debate unless they are extremely foolish no matter where they are in the polling order.

Second I did not buy the Niqab as the thing that ruined Mulcair's campaign. I think it just so happened that things were turning when that came up and it was seen as cause and effect. I realize this is the popular notion but I never accepted it. The NDP was in trouble well before then. I don't think it was the difference. The issues with the NDP campaign had more to do with being seen to be right of the Liberals, the approach to the deficit, the lack of promotion of NDP priorities, the dismal first debate performance, the lack of response to the middle class tax cut ads. -- If the NDP had come out hard on the middle class tax cut calling it a fraud (which it was and still is) and if they had not promised to freeze corporate taxes and taxes on the wealthy, the NDP may have had a chance. The campaign was poorly thought out.

I wrote here that the NDP chances to win were just about over even before the Niqab gambit came up.

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn wrote:

Justin Trudau has, in my opinion, succeeded in turning federal politics in Canada into a popularity contest. Average voter engagement on issues has plummeted in the 10 months since the October 2015 election.

If Trudeau's popularity holds through 2019, then I would expect voter engagement in the 2019 election to plummet, as Trudeau supporters would feel confident in re-electing the Liberals without paying any attention to what the parties are offering on policy.

The NDP and the Conservatives are both in a very difficult position. Both parties have lost their leaders from the 2015 election, and both are going to struggle to engage voters beyond their core supporters in their upcoming leadership contests. Once these parties pick their leaders, they'll struggle to gain name recognition in the current climate.

If Trudau has an achilles heel, it's probably pipelines. If the Liberals approve either the Kinder-Morgan or Energy East pipelines, it could hurt the Liberals popularity in BC and Quebec respectively. Though keep in mind that the Liberals have enjoyed a surge in popularity since the last election, so their popularity could take a hit in BC and/or Quebec and still wind up being what it was in 2015.

The greens are still largely viewed as a fringe party. The BDS resolution that passed at their recent convention, while welcome to this babbler, doesn't change this fact.

If the NDP picks another centrist Liberal-lite leader, they could bleed some support to the greens. My guess though is tha this bleed would be at a level where it would hurt the NDP more than it would help the Greens.

The other factor is what changes are made to the electoral system for the 2019 election. These changes could either help to cement the Liberals dominant position, or help the NDP and Conservatives  (and possibly the Greens) maintain a larger presence.

I disagree with this as well -- the reason is that I don't think it was Trudeau alone that made it a popularity contest.

The NDP went with the leadership politics to a level they had never done before -- even with Layton.

And the other factor in it becoming a popularity contest is you had three very negative campaigns against one positive one. The NDP, Conservatives and BQ all ran gloomy nasty campaigns and pretend now that this was not part of the reason people did not flock to them -- shocking really since Layton had left the NDP with the hope is stronger and better than fear message.

I was wrong about Brain Topp here. He would have been infinitely better because he at least grasped that. In retrospect I think Topp could have presented a more positive campaign. But hindsight is 20-20.

When you promote the leader over all else (something all the parties did) you can't have in a leader a pessimistic often petty negative person and expect to do well. That was Mulcair's persona and at the start of the campaign he really did not know how to communicate without it and so he went back to that.

Trudeau I have heard does have a petty mean streak at times but he does not let that become part of what people see and he understands the need to market positive. I would agree with him there and so would Layton.

By the end of the previous campaign Layton was the most popular and if he had won some would ahve said he turned it into a popularity contest- but that would have been sour grapes just becuase he became a person we wanted to know. And for millions of Canadians -- so did Trudeau.

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

..bc is where more conservatives were lost than all the rest of canada put together.

That is clearly not true.

In 2011 they had 166 seats including 21 in BC.

In 2015 they were reduced to 99 seats in a larger parliament with 10 in BC.

They lost 67 seats in total -- only 11 in BC.

They lost 40 seats in Ontario alone.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

my mistake sean. i meant more conservative votes not mp's.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..bc is where more conservative votes were lost than all the rest of canada put together. and most of these were in ridings that touched water. this due mostly to harper policies on pipelines and tankers..even in solid conservative ridings. this is the people factor and it is not considered in the analysis other than in passing references playing bit parts like voting. for quite some time the ndp benefited the most from this anything but harper movement in that long long election. the libs didn't steal it in my view..the ndp lost it.

..now i see a resurgence of electoral chatter on babble..in the electoral realm that omits the people factor. i see this omission as a weakness in the analysis presented. especially now when the movements are stronger than they were when the election took place. this will play a large roll in the next election i predict and there is no counting the ndp out. but the must get invloved much closer with those movements.

..today i see steward kennedy raising funds in burnaby to defeat kinder morgan. romeo saganash has got a petition going round calling for the full implementation of the declaration on the rights of Indigenous peoples. thiis would impact heavily on site c dam, pipelines and the tar sands themselves. while alexandre boulerice is calling for disbanding the neb energy east hearings. so the ndp are well aware of the importance of these struggles. i feel though rather than just try and protect individual ridings, the ndp as a party need to commit to altering the present path towards climate and extraction.

edit

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

my mistake sean. i meant more conservative votes not mp's.

I was curious as it did not make sense to me becuase the proportion of voters in BC is so much lower than Ontario for example. So I looked

In 2015 they had 708,010 votes in BC and 2,293,393 votes in Ontario.

In 2011 they had 853,272 votes in BC and 2,457,463 votes in Ontario.

The loss from one election to the other was 145,262 votes in BC and 164,070 in Ontario

But then look at the national figures:

5,613,633 in 2015; 5,835,270 in 2011 for a difference of 221,637

You can see that the net loss from BC and Ontario together was more than the national net loss (this means the Conservative vote in some provinces went up which is not a huge shock when you consider that the overall vote went up substantively). The vote share of the Cosnervatives was uniformly down but in some provinces increased turnout and larger population means that even with a lower share they got more votes.

Still, if you add the national net loss together it is still more than BC -- and the loss was greater in Ontario in votes as well. So on this you are still not correct.

But I assumed there was something to what you were saying. So the third option was to look at vote share. Now proportions cannot be added so there is no putting it together (you cannot simply add fractions with different denominators). Even so we can see that the vote share went down in other places more than BC even though it did see a loss of 15.5% in vote share. But MB as well as every one of the Atlantic Provinces had an even greater loss in vote share.

Still I thought the figures were interesting so decided to share them back.

.....2015.....-....2011

BC 30.0 45.5 diff 15.5

AB 59.5 66.8 diff 7.3

SK 48.5 56.3 diff 7.8

MB 37.3 53.5 diff 16.2

ON 35.0 44.4 diff 9.4

QC 16.7 16.5 diff 0.2

NB 25.3 43.9 diff 18.6

NS 17.9 36.7 diff 18.8

PE 19.3 41.2 diff 21.9

NL 10.3 28.4 diff 18.1

YT 24.0 33.8 diff 9.8

NT 18.0 32.1 diff 14.1

NU 24.8 49.9 diff 25.1

 

Sean in Ottawa

All that said, I remember something that sounded like what you mentionned -- this is why I looked so much becuase I had heard soemthing like this and was curious becuase it did not make sense to me.

I think it may have been related to vote share in the ridings that touched the Pacific. It is possible that the Conservatives had the greatest loss in vote share in those ridings (not province wide in BC). I don't have the time to pull those figures but if you look at the pipeline root ridings to the Pacific this may be where you could be correct -- except it is not seats or votes but relative vote share.

Of course the issue of the vote loss and what and where it is does not dimish your point about the significance and the concentration of loss in the pipeline areas and touching water areas.

I challenged the minor point becuase it was interesting to me but this in no way compromises the larger points you were making in your post. I should be clear about that since I think it was an important observation.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..my statement was based on my memory of a report i posted post election. i posted it in 3 different threads. i will try and find that report and post it but i can't do it from where i am and i'll be here for another 5 or 6 days.

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

..my statement was based on my memory of a report i posted post election. i posted it in 3 different threads. i will try and find that report and post it but i can't do it from where i am and i'll be here for another 5 or 6 days.

No problem -- I look forward to reading it. I seem to remember a similar thing. This is why I went looking for the data. I am pretty sure this was an analysis of the ridings along the pipeline route in BC and the loss being disproportional there.

I just tried to find it but was not able. I hope you can.

Unionist

epaulo13 wrote:

..my statement was based on my memory of a report i posted post election. i posted it in 3 different threads. i will try and find that report and post it but i can't do it from where i am and i'll be here for another 5 or 6 days.

I think you posted this:

[url=https://dogwoodinitiative.org/voter-turnout-defeated-harper/]Strategic voting didn’t defeat Harper. Voter turnout did.[/url]

Quote:

In 2011 the federal Conservative Party won 853,272 votes in British Columbia, claiming 21 out of 36 seats and finishing second in 13 more. With overall turnout low, the Conservative share of the popular vote was 46 per cent. If you transpose those votes to the new riding boundaries, the Conservatives would have won 28 seats. What happened?

On Monday the Conservatives actually did a remarkable job in most parts of the country getting their base out to vote. Outside of B.C. the party experienced a net loss of just 85,669 votes compared to 2011. But here in B.C. the collapse was dire: a net loss of 149,075 votes, or 64 per cent of the national total. In the 19 ridings where Dogwood Initiative worked in this election, Conservative candidates lost 82,257 votes – nearly as many as in the rest of the country put together. Swamped by the rising tide of voter turnout, the Conservative vote was diluted. They lost all but 10 seats out of 42.

Sean in Ottawa

Unionist wrote:

epaulo13 wrote:

..my statement was based on my memory of a report i posted post election. i posted it in 3 different threads. i will try and find that report and post it but i can't do it from where i am and i'll be here for another 5 or 6 days.

I think you posted this:

[url=https://dogwoodinitiative.org/voter-turnout-defeated-harper/]Strategic voting didn’t defeat Harper. Voter turnout did.[/url]

Quote:

In 2011 the federal Conservative Party won 853,272 votes in British Columbia, claiming 21 out of 36 seats and finishing second in 13 more. With overall turnout low, the Conservative share of the popular vote was 46 per cent. If you transpose those votes to the new riding boundaries, the Conservatives would have won 28 seats. What happened?

On Monday the Conservatives actually did a remarkable job in most parts of the country getting their base out to vote. Outside of B.C. the party experienced a net loss of just 85,669 votes compared to 2011. But here in B.C. the collapse was dire: a net loss of 149,075 votes, or 64 per cent of the national total. In the 19 ridings where Dogwood Initiative worked in this election, Conservative candidates lost 82,257 votes – nearly as many as in the rest of the country put together. Swamped by the rising tide of voter turnout, the Conservative vote was diluted. They lost all but 10 seats out of 42.

So then Epaulo rememberd it fairly well. The problem was that this source was wrong.

I say this becuase the figures I posted in this thread are from Elections Canada and they are the official ones.

I think there is another article about the pipeline ridings -- I am not sure now if it would be accurate either if it relies on the same source as this.

I do know that there could have been preliminary results that could have differed from the EC final tallies but these are rather big differences so I have no idea why. But in the end the Conservatives got nearly a quarter million fewer votes in 2015 than they did in 2011. They did this with almost 3 million more votes being cast.

 

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I disagree with this as well -- the reason is that I don't think it was Trudeau alone that made it a popularity contest.

The NDP went with the leadership politics to a level they had never done before -- even with Layton.

And the other factor in it becoming a popularity contest is you had three very negative campaigns against one positive one. The NDP, Conservatives and BQ all ran gloomy nasty campaigns and pretend now that this was not part of the reason people did not flock to them -- shocking really since Layton had left the NDP with the hope is stronger and better than fear message.

Sean, my comment was mainly about how Trudeau has SINCE the election managed to turn his own popularity into the main media narrative surrounding federal politics. The MSM routinely writes puff pieces about Trudeau that are on the level of celebrity gossip sections; and the public is eating it up in droves. The other parties are going to have a very tough time convincing pro-Trudeau voters that issues stil matter.

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

I disagree with this as well -- the reason is that I don't think it was Trudeau alone that made it a popularity contest.

The NDP went with the leadership politics to a level they had never done before -- even with Layton.

And the other factor in it becoming a popularity contest is you had three very negative campaigns against one positive one. The NDP, Conservatives and BQ all ran gloomy nasty campaigns and pretend now that this was not part of the reason people did not flock to them -- shocking really since Layton had left the NDP with the hope is stronger and better than fear message.

Sean, my comment was mainly about how Trudeau has SINCE the election managed to turn his own popularity into the main media narrative surrounding federal politics. The MSM routinely writes puff pieces about Trudeau that are on the level of celebrity gossip sections; and the public is eating it up in droves. The other parties are going to have a very tough time convincing pro-Trudeau voters that issues stil matter.

I think certainly this is true and it is easier to produce a puff piece than one related to policy. These articles are filler -- advertising delivery -- like reality TV minus the reality.

I think there is more to this than Trudeau though. He is a popular subject but I think a lot of what passes for journalism would have taken the easy way regardless. They would have found other subjects. It is useful for the Liberals to go along with this than have the attention on more difficult matters but I think this is a journalism dynamic deeper than Trudeau himself. And the media went for this becuase it sells -- sadly people want entertainment more than information but that is not that new it has been a trend growing for the last generation.

iyraste1313

I saw two centrist parties and chose the one that would deliver the most benefit to me and other Canadians under neoliberalism....

...while I do appreciate your spirited excellent arguments...this is your conclusion? as a leftist?

Is this not supposed to be a site for progressive alternative politics? Why are we not talking about useful strategies?

There are no longer term benefitsd to neoliberalism, except possibly some short term buyouts, only fiurther corrupting any possibilities for transformations from the neoliberal globalist venture....

as the system´s authorities make their last ditch efforts to save their bankrupt finances (via the central banks), where will we find the discussions for the alternatives?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..thank you unionist. although that wasn't the piece i had posted mine was also from dogwood. the numbers look the same though with the addition of the loss of 90,000 in ridings that touched water.

..the bc numbers are close to what you posted sean. less than 4,000 separating but for the rest of the country big difference. insights west though has run polls since 2011 or maybe even before re pipelines and the numbers i have found to be consistent. rejection has always been high and i believe that around 50% rejection has been bottom.

..i want to once again though come back to the people factor point. the most recent example that unionist posted in the west east thread re shutting down the neb hearing. opinions runs deep and passionate. and there is no way this will be swayed by smooth talking politicians or promises of safety and jobs. there needs to be real alternatives put forward that can be applied right now..today. transit is a example where tomorrow more buses could be put on the road. i know the extra buses are there in vancouver and just needs more drivers. political will is what is preventing this and mass pressure is the solution.

..where is the party that will catch and carry these issues? will it be the ndp? if not the movements will find alternatives..greens for instance. not because greens are the most progressive or democratic of parties but because this is a way to move the issues forward on a political stage. also a way to force other parties to take more forceful positions. imho.

Sean in Ottawa

iyraste1313 wrote:

I saw two centrist parties and chose the one that would deliver the most benefit to me and other Canadians under neoliberalism....

...while I do appreciate your spirited excellent arguments...this is your conclusion? as a leftist?

Is this not supposed to be a site for progressive alternative politics? Why are we not talking about useful strategies?

There are no longer term benefitsd to neoliberalism, except possibly some short term buyouts, only fiurther corrupting any possibilities for transformations from the neoliberal globalist venture....

as the system´s authorities make their last ditch efforts to save their bankrupt finances (via the central banks), where will we find the discussions for the alternatives?

Sorry I do not know who you are addressing and I don't know what you refer to when you say is this your conclusion. I am not sure if the person you want to answer is less lost than me. Can you help explain more.

It does look like an interesting question...

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

..thank you unionist. although that wasn't the piece i had posted mine was also from dogwood. the numbers look the same though with the addition of the loss of 90,000 in ridings that touched water.

..the bc numbers are close to what you posted sean. less than 4,000 separating but for the rest of the country big difference. insights west though has run polls since 2011 or maybe even before re pipelines and the numbers i have found to be consistent. rejection has always been high and i believe that around 50% rejection has been bottom.

..i want to once again though come back to the people factor point. the most recent example that unionist posted in the west east thread re shutting down the neb hearing. opinions runs deep and passionate. and there is no way this will be swayed by smooth talking politicians or promises of safety and jobs. there needs to be real alternatives put forward that can be applied right now..today. transit is a example where tomorrow more buses could be put on the road. i know the extra buses are there in vancouver and just needs more drivers. political will is what is preventing this and mass pressure is the solution.

..where is the party that will catch and carry these issues? will it be the ndp? if not the movements will find alternatives..greens for instance. not because greens are the most progressive or democratic of parties but because this is a way to move the issues forward on a political stage. also a way to force other parties to take more forceful positions. imho.

Yes Epaulo I do realize that your major point on how people are empowered and their views come down to policy is more important than the side issue of the Conservative loss in support. I wonder if a single political party will ever truly carry the issues -- they will always being trying to defend a position, attack a position or look out for an interest. What is needed is a non-partisan conduit that is issues based, I think.

I actually think that a reformed Senate could be helpful without parties -- apologies to any who would be upset that my position here is closer to Trudeau. But I do believe we can do well with an institution that is not overtly partisan. I say this becuase of course the individuals will have preferences but by not being overt it may be easier for issue based views to cross partisan lines and get greater consideration than otherwise they would.

A lot of this is cost / value. We don't have this discussion when you ahve parties scrambling to shut things down in order to promote their vision or to leave money on the table for their priority.

As well my other bias regarding the Senate is that it is an existing institution that I think could provide for recognition of Aboriginal peoples where their nations do not get lost in part politics. Provinces are geographic and so the constitutional divisions of the Senate woudl not need to be abandoned by imposing a other variables on top of it when it comes to allocating the seats. Without it being elected you can have a level of inclusion that an electoral process would never accomodate.

I am keen on hearing other people's ideas in answer to Epaulo becuase he is raising an absolutely critical issue here if I am understanding it correctly. The Senate option is just one. Perhaps there are other better ones.

swallow

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

iyraste1313 wrote:

I saw two centrist parties and chose the one that would deliver the most benefit to me and other Canadians under neoliberalism....

...while I do appreciate your spirited excellent arguments...this is your conclusion? as a leftist?

Is this not supposed to be a site for progressive alternative politics? Why are we not talking about useful strategies?

There are no longer term benefitsd to neoliberalism, except possibly some short term buyouts, only fiurther corrupting any possibilities for transformations from the neoliberal globalist venture....

as the system´s authorities make their last ditch efforts to save their bankrupt finances (via the central banks), where will we find the discussions for the alternatives?

Sorry I do not know who you are addressing and I don't know what you refer to when you say is this your conclusion. I am not sure if the person you want to answer is less lost than me. Can you help explain more.

It does look like an interesting question...

That was addressed to Pondering - I think iyraste1313 (instead of using the quote function) usually quotes someone verbatim without quote marks, then adds their own response after three dots. 

 

Pondering

iyraste1313 wrote:

I saw two centrist parties and chose the one that would deliver the most benefit to me and other Canadians under neoliberalism....

...while I do appreciate your spirited excellent arguments...this is your conclusion? as a leftist?

Is this not supposed to be a site for progressive alternative politics? Why are we not talking about useful strategies?

There are no longer term benefitsd to neoliberalism, except possibly some short term buyouts, only fiurther corrupting any possibilities for transformations from the neoliberal globalist venture....

as the system´s authorities make their last ditch efforts to save their bankrupt finances (via the central banks), where will we find the discussions for the alternatives?

There is no alternative in terms of political parties. They all support neoliberalism. If either CUPE or the Council of Canadians were political parties I would vote for them because they are the only two organizations opposing CETA. In my opinion trade deals are the key to unraveling neoliberalism.

The Liberals are open to social programs that mitigate the harms of neoliberalism because it buys social peace and because they believe it's good for business to support education. One of Trudeau's arguments for improving indigenous education is that they are the fastest growing population in Canada so they can be either a burden or a resource. Yes he also believes it's the right thing to do but the economic argument underpins it. The Conservatives have a very short-sighted view always looking for immediate economic benefit. The Liberals take a longer view.

I think there are plenty of alternatives right now. There are great affordable solutions in every field. If existing best practices in Canada and around the world were put in place our lives would improve immeasurably. What is lacking is the political will which can only be driven by the people.  When the public is angry enough leaders like Sanders and Corbyn can rise but even they will not lead the revolution. Only people in the millions in the streets can force government to act or be replaced. When they are ready to do that there are plenty of alternatives available.

 

Unionist

epaulo13 wrote:

..where is the party that will catch and carry these issues? will it be the ndp? if not the movements will find alternatives..greens for instance. not because greens are the most progressive or democratic of parties but because this is a way to move the issues forward on a political stage. also a way to force other parties to take more forceful positions. imho.

That's the way I see it. Either some party catches and carries these issues (as you say), or the movements will find alternatives. I'm actually impressed these days that the Greens don't seem as subject to bureaucratic dictatorship and utter alienation from real movements as some others. But we shall see.

Sean in Ottawa

swallow wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

iyraste1313 wrote:

I saw two centrist parties and chose the one that would deliver the most benefit to me and other Canadians under neoliberalism....

...while I do appreciate your spirited excellent arguments...this is your conclusion? as a leftist?

Is this not supposed to be a site for progressive alternative politics? Why are we not talking about useful strategies?

There are no longer term benefitsd to neoliberalism, except possibly some short term buyouts, only fiurther corrupting any possibilities for transformations from the neoliberal globalist venture....

as the system´s authorities make their last ditch efforts to save their bankrupt finances (via the central banks), where will we find the discussions for the alternatives?

Sorry I do not know who you are addressing and I don't know what you refer to when you say is this your conclusion. I am not sure if the person you want to answer is less lost than me. Can you help explain more.

It does look like an interesting question...

That was addressed to Pondering - I think iyraste1313 (instead of using the quote function) usually quotes someone verbatim without quote marks, then adds their own response after three dots. 

 

Okay -- thanks

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

Sean, my comment was mainly about how Trudeau has SINCE the election managed to turn his own popularity into the main media narrative surrounding federal politics. The MSM routinely writes puff pieces about Trudeau that are on the level of celebrity gossip sections; and the public is eating it up in droves. The other parties are going to have a very tough time convincing pro-Trudeau voters that issues stil matter.

I think certainly this is true and it is easier to produce a puff piece than one related to policy. These articles are filler -- advertising delivery -- like reality TV minus the reality.

I think there is more to this than Trudeau though. He is a popular subject but I think a lot of what passes for journalism would have taken the easy way regardless. They would have found other subjects. It is useful for the Liberals to go along with this than have the attention on more difficult matters but I think this is a journalism dynamic deeper than Trudeau himself. And the media went for this becuase it sells -- sadly people want entertainment more than information but that is not that new it has been a trend growing for the last generation.

Sean, what I'm getting at is that Trudeau's personal popularity is sucking all the oxygen out of the room which will make it very difficult for the NDP to get enough attention to get their support level out of the basement. It also means that matters such as Trudeau courting unions are flying almost completely under the radar, making it's effect on the position of the NDP basically irrelevant.

In all likelihood anyone whose political backbone is weak enough that they would shift their support from NDP to Liberal based on Trudeau courting unions is a)probably unaware that Trudeau is courting unions, and b)has already shifted their support from NDP to Liberal based on Trudeau's personal popularity.

 

Pondering

Left Turn wrote:
Sean, what I'm getting at is that Trudeau's personal popularity is sucking all the oxygen out of the room which will make it very difficult for the NDP to get enough attention to get their support level out of the basement. It also means that matters such as Trudeau courting unions are flying almost completely under the radar, making it's effect on the position of the NDP basically irrelevant.

In all likelihood anyone whose political backbone is weak enough that they would shift their support from NDP to Liberal based on Trudeau courting unions is a)probably unaware that Trudeau is courting unions, and b)has already shifted their support from NDP to Liberal based on Trudeau's personal popularity.

Hardly anyone watches the mainstream media and most Canadians don't have "political backbones". They are voting for the party most likely to deliver the results they want. That's all. They are not picking an ideology. They are picking best of three.

The NDP isn't helping unions fight CETA so why should unions have any fealty to the NDP? What has the federal NDP done for unions?

The NDP wants to be a centrist party that automatically gets the leftist vote. That is why they didn't bother supporting marijuana legalization or taking a stand against CETA, or is CETA a leftist deal now? If so why is CUPE fighing it?

If the NDP actually took a leftist position on trade deals and pipelines they would make the news. The NDP has made themselves irrelevant. Anything that can be got from the NDP can be got from the Liberals and the Liberals are set to be in power for the next ten to fifteen years.

It is the NDP that is lacking in political backbone and that makes them irrelevant.

Mark Alfred has a list of five or six things that differenciate the NDP from the Liberals but I keep forgetting most of them. The only two things I can think of is that the NDP is more against armed foreign adventure and would have started limited funding of national daycare if the provinces had agreed to pay into it and if it would not have unbalanced the budget.

As far as I can tell people on "the left" are fighting their battles directly because there is no political party for them or me to support. I am as likely to see a minimum income program from the Liberals as I am from the NDP. The NDP takes some token leftist positions, like repealing C-51, and that is supposed to buy leftist political loyalty. The NDP must think leftists come pretty cheap.

Trudeau can be beat but not with the attitude I see here that disrespects voters and blames them for not supporting the NDP.

There should never have been any reason for the Greens to exist. The environmental movement, probably the biggest social justice movement in the world, certainly in Canada, and the NDP is nowhere with it. Indigenous rights, Liberals will do as much as the NDP would have. Provincial NDP government don't seem to have done more for indigenous peoples than any other government. Income inequality, the NDP didn't make it an issue.

People here keep insisting the NDP is a leftist party but I just don't see it. If a party is leftist there should be no way a centrist party can flank it on the left. If should not be possible on any topic.

The NDP handed the "left" vote to the Liberals. They have only themselves to blame for that not the Liberals and not voters.

Sean in Ottawa

Left Turn wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

Sean, my comment was mainly about how Trudeau has SINCE the election managed to turn his own popularity into the main media narrative surrounding federal politics. The MSM routinely writes puff pieces about Trudeau that are on the level of celebrity gossip sections; and the public is eating it up in droves. The other parties are going to have a very tough time convincing pro-Trudeau voters that issues stil matter.

I think certainly this is true and it is easier to produce a puff piece than one related to policy. These articles are filler -- advertising delivery -- like reality TV minus the reality.

I think there is more to this than Trudeau though. He is a popular subject but I think a lot of what passes for journalism would have taken the easy way regardless. They would have found other subjects. It is useful for the Liberals to go along with this than have the attention on more difficult matters but I think this is a journalism dynamic deeper than Trudeau himself. And the media went for this becuase it sells -- sadly people want entertainment more than information but that is not that new it has been a trend growing for the last generation.

Sean, what I'm getting at is that Trudeau's personal popularity is sucking all the oxygen out of the room which will make it very difficult for the NDP to get enough attention to get their support level out of the basement. It also means that matters such as Trudeau courting unions are flying almost completely under the radar, making it's effect on the position of the NDP basically irrelevant.

In all likelihood anyone whose political backbone is weak enough that they would shift their support from NDP to Liberal based on Trudeau courting unions is a)probably unaware that Trudeau is courting unions, and b)has already shifted their support from NDP to Liberal based on Trudeau's personal popularity.

 

The NDP is not really suffering as much as it looks.

First the party is down about 4-8% from the election at the end of the Summer.

The summer is a time of photo ops and no policy. Governments often do well during the summer and certainly parties with leaders that get attention do as well. When the House is sitting and policy is on the agenda the NDP may well get more attention.

As the madate goes further the Liberals will have to solidify positions and will not be able to be all things to all people. Issues will come up that will help the NDP so long as they do not mismanage it.

The Conservative leadership is in full swing. They will get more attention now given the NDP is going later.

The NDP leadership contest is happening a little later on whihc is likely a good thing as the government will expose some government policy areas where there will be debate potential leaders will want to weigh in on. There will be more room for NDP debates on its own priorities as people think more towards alternative options.

I would imagine that the NDP leadership process will attract attention and spur on a recovery from the lows in recent popularity.

I would expect that the NDP at this point can obtain the support of roughly 20% of Canadians and would poll lower at this time of year. To increase that level of support the party will have to have both concrete policy options that make sense and are different and certainly leadership personalities. It may also be that the party will take some years to get back to the levels of opportunity that have recently been lost or wasted.

The party must make itself open to leadership options outside the party as I described. It also must watch the Greens somewhat and not let them become the activist left alternative. May is not that but should she leave and the party shift this would pose a problem for the NDP -- people like me would certainly consider the Greens if they were to offer a real left alternative as well as an environmental one. The BDS vote in the Green party should be an indication of that potential. The NDP will want to have recovered enough of its reason for being by the time May retires given that the next Green leader could tilt right but could also come from a more activist left place.

There are many poeple like me who have remained with the NDP their entire lives but are loyal to the principles more than the party structures. If the Greens offered me what I want to see, I could vote for them especially if the NDP is muddled and not showing leadership and confidence that they really want to be a left party.

I remain for now interested strongly in the NDP but for the first time in my life not a decided voter, as I have been since the election. I am quite open to what they or others may offer.

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..when i talk about finding a party to catch and carry the issues i am not talking about movements finding a home. it’s a strategy or tactic and a collaboration with that party. because that is what is needed to move forward on the electoral political stage today. 

..the movements are working on multi levels. building new structures or using existing ones. where space is opened at the grassroots level for democratic participation and decision making.  this is possible via alliance building and this is where the control needs to stay. this is building from the bottom up and this is how to transition to yet undetermined places that is rooted in local needs. i believe this is more than just theory today but actual practice in it’s very early stages. we see examples of this in the indigenous movements that are taking control over their territories. and as i have mentioned many times in spain taking control of municipalities.

..behind climate disaster is capitalism so this must change. for me this will never come from the top down. and from the top down also means from parliaments. though others here may disagree, i say we need techs and administrators at that level not handfuls of people making decisions “for us”. but i'm sure there are other ways for this to play out but each and every one of those ways has to take into consideration the time limits we face.

..edit 1 word

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..so what do you think of my last post. Wink

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

Pondering wrote:
It is the NDP that is lacking in political backbone and that makes them irrelevant.

I agree that the NDP has lacked political backbone under Mulcair, and that this enabled the Liberals to outflank the NDP to the left on some issues and on tone in general.

At the same time, my take on the current state of Canadian poiitics is that almost all of the Liberal-NDP swing voters who voted NDP in the last election have since gone over to the Liberals based on Trudeau's personal popularity. To be fair, the NDP has not offered much of a reason for these voters to stick with the party, so it's not just that these voters are enamoured with Trudeau. However, in going over to the Liberal camp, most of these voters appear to have written off the NDP as irrelevant, so it will be hard for the next NDP leader to get these voters to pay attention to what the party will have to say.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
I agree that the NDP has lacked political backbone under Mulcair, and that this enabled the Liberals to outflank the NDP to the left on some issues and on tone in general.

It's funny to me that, depending on the thread and its topic, Trudeau and the Liberals can simultaneously be regarded as having outflanked the NDP on progressive issues, and also just grinningly offered "sunny ways" to a gullible electorate.

Is it one?  Or the other?  Or is Justin Trudeau a real life Schrodinger's Cat?

iyraste1313

.so what do you think of my last post?....

likewise I struggle with this idea whenever I regain any hope for a future for Canada...clearly we need a political party under the control of a movement based on our cherished ideals of grassroots democracy and socialism and decentralism...why even bother with a party? that is a valid question, but surely a movement party would eliminate the kind of ineffectual discussions going no where over which establishment neoliberal party to support.....if you have ideals, then you must support the movement and through its Party, controlled by the movement...Why movement? Because the political entity is just one tiny part of the puzzle....we need a reorientation of values, we need to be dedicating ourselves to new economics, finances and technologies, we need to be refocussing on decentralist entities, autonomous bioregions and territories! Within such a movement!

epaulo thanks for persisting!

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

..when i talk about finding a party to catch and carry the issues i am not talking about movements finding a home. it’s a strategy or tactic and a collaboration with that party. because that is what is needed to move forward on the electoral political stage today. 

..the movements are working on multi levels. building new structures or using existing ones. where space is opened at the grassroots level for democratic participation and decision making.  this is possible via alliance building and this is where the control needs to stay. this is building from the bottom up and this is how to transition to yet undetermined places that is rooted in local needs. i believe this is more than just theory today but actual practice in it’s very early stages. we see examples of this in the indigenous movements that are taking control over their territories. and as i have mentioned many times in spain taking control of municipalities.

..behind climate disaster is capitalism so this must change. for me this will never come from the top down. and from the top down also means from parliaments. though others here may disagree, i say we need techs and administrators at that level not handfuls of people making decisions “for us”. but i'm sure there are other ways for this to play out but each and every one of those ways has to take into consideration the time limits we face.

..edit 1 word

This sounds interesting but I am not sure I follow all of it. Can you explain a bit more and give an example of movements that are not connected to political parties that are succeeding.

Thanks for posting this.

quizzical

epaulo13 wrote:
..the movements are working on multi levels. building new structures or using existing ones. where space is opened at the grassroots level for democratic participation and decision making.  this is possible via alliance building and this is where the control needs to stay. this is building from the bottom up and this is how to transition to yet undetermined places that is rooted in local needs. i believe this is more than just theory today but actual practice in it’s very early stages. we see examples of this in the indigenous movements that are taking control over their territories. and as i have mentioned many times in spain taking control of municipalities.

i agree with all of this and i see it happening in small communities across BC.

there's a sentiment of "they (government) don't give a fk about us or our opinions so we'll just carry on and do what's best for ourselves, as we see it".

example

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/carol-linnitt/canada-geothermal-village_b_1...

 

iyraste1313

´The Liberals are open to social programs that mitigate the harms of neoliberalism........´

perhaps in the immediate term...but within the context of a failing Canadian economy based on its dependence on a failing corporate globalization, our social programs are to be drowned in a sea of debt and hyperinflation...

No there is no alternative but to be promoting an real alternative based on national, regional and (indigenous) Territorial autonomy, where we regain control of our own economy, I call it a natural economy based on the processing and redistribution of our own resources, ecologically respected and fairtraded...surely we must learn from the disaster of venezuela, putting its resources into mitigation instead of building a real socialist economy from the ground up!

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

This sounds interesting but I am not sure I follow all of it. Can you explain a bit more and give an example of movements that are not connected to political parties that are succeeding.

Thanks for posting this.

..txs sean for the question.

..i don't argue that there are no political party connection but that they operate in an autonomus manner. here are some examples of what i'm talking about. all of these and more can be found in the autonamy thread here.

..in less than 2 wks i'll be headed out to porto alegre for a month. canoas is just a few klicks north of pa and it is my intention to attend one of the community meeting if it is possible.

Canoas: A Government of, for and by the People

Oakland, New York, Minneapolis, among others, are exploring the possibility of “participatory budgeting,” an initiative to shift decision-making on development projects from the government to the community, and increase citizen engagement. In order to better understand the process, delegations from these cities visited Canoas, an industrial city of 350,000 in Southern Brazil. What they discovered there was a lot more than one innovative program, but a “new system of participatory government.”

...

Power in India: radical pathways

‘Our government is in Mumbai and Delhi, but we are the government in our village’, Mendha-Lekha village, Maharashtra.

‘These hills and forests belong to Niyamraja, they are the basis of our survival and livelihoods, we will not allow any company to take them away from us’, Dongria Kondh adivasis (indigenous people), Odisha.

‘Seeds are the core of our identity, our culture, our livelihoods, they are our heritage and no government agency or corporation can control them’, Dalit women of Deccan Development Society, Telangana.

These three assertions of ‘ordinary’ people in different parts of India suggest the basis of a radical restructuring of political relations and a significant deepening of democracy

....

Barcelona en Comú: the city as horizon for radical democracy

With all eyes on Syriza, Podemos and the Troika, the focus of attention among the left these days is the possibility to reclaim democracy at the state — and, inshallah, at the supranational — level. Yet at the same time, somewhat less visibly, there is a new cycle of struggles for democratic governance unfolding at the level of the city.

....

Building autonomy with agroecology

I am not a slave, nor an object - I have no owner, I am not a piece of property - I want freedom to be a woman...”. These were the chants of over 5000 women smallholder farmers from the Borborema Pole farmers’ union and from other regions in the state of Paraíba in Brazil as they marched through the city of Lagoa Seca in early 2015. Their songs became the marching call in the struggle for autonomy, for an end to all forms of oppression and violence against women, and in support of agroecology. Dressed in white or in lilac, with flags in hand and hats on their heads, the women took to the streets as part of the 6th March for the Lives of Women and Agroecology. They shared experiences and discussed different forms of violence that they experience. The march was organised by a strong network of female farmer-innovators who have been driving change in the lives of hundreds of women, and creating a development plan for the region based on agroecology.

....

Peasant women power in Mozambique

quote:

This changed when women started to organise themselves in local producer organisations. One of these is the Association of Strawberry Producers of Namaacha (APMONA), consisting mostly of widows and their families. When a man dies he leaves behind a great responsibility to his wife to take care of the family, feed the kids, keep the house, send children to school and produce food on the land. The widows of the Association are farming as their main (and in many cases only) economic activity to support the family. They resolved to grow their food in a way that is consistent with agroecological principles.

Their production is based on a model that divides the land into individual and community plots.  From the community plot, a portion of the produce goes to each member and her family, and the rest is channelled to the local market in Namaacha. The benefit of having a collective machamaba (field) is that peasants share knowledge with each other – it’s a space for learning.

....

By rejecting $1bn for a pipeline, a First Nation has put Trudeau's climate plan on trial

Canada’s Lax Kw’alaams show us how we can be saved: by loving the natural world and local living economies more than mere money and profit.

quote:

On the other side, the salmon protectors, feeding tens of thousands and supporting a commercial and recreational economy crucial to British Columbians. Promoting an abundance of life instead of threatening to extinguish it. Taking care with the land so that it can take care of people. Getting by on what the earth can continually restore rather than depleting forever what lies beneath.

...

Building Democracy without the State

“When people first came to our house a few years ago to ask if our family would like to participate in the communes, I threw stones at them to keep them away,” laughs Bushra, a young woman from Tirbespiye, Rojava. The mother of two belongs to an ultra-conservative religious sect. Before, she had never been allowed to leave her home and used to cover her entire body except her eyes.

“Now I actively shape my own community,” she says with a proud and radiant smile. “People come to me to seek help in solving social issues. But at the time, if you had asked me, I wouldn’t even have known what ‘council’ meant or what people do in assemblies.”

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..txs iyraste. txs quizzical can you share some other examples? ok the link is working now

quizzical

another example of regional initiatives for community change based not on formal regional districts but geographic regions impacted from the same occurance.

in this case it is a transfer of monies from the provincial government to an independant org and then outward to communities. lot's of info in the link to what's going on in the Columbia basin.

http://ourtrust.org/

 

Sean in Ottawa

Thanks for this -- and please don't take my questions as hostile to anything you are saying.

By examples of success I mean in part -- first an understanding of what we mean by success -- what we need and are looking for.

And the objective really defines what you need to get it done.

I think that you need to work within a political party if your goal is a concrete change in policy. But quite often that is not the objective so we should be clear about that.

Idle No More is a grass roots movement -- I don't even want to say organization because it is wider than it is organized which is really what has made it as strong as it is. As I understand it, the purposes included -- providing a name to a struggle, building pride in that struggle among those who already cared about it (allies as well as indigenous people), bringing people to an idea that they could determine for themselves how they would participate yet still have the wider association, to attract attention to the immediate needs, to be open to include many actions from the local rather than a top down authority -- and other objectives. Idle No More provided something that allies as well as Aboriginal People could identify as something they would support. I would say it achieved all of those objectives and hope that action would be helpful. I suspect Idle No More was far more effective than anyone would have predicted at the outset.

But Idle No More needed political allies to get policy change so let's look at that. The movement inspired the highest ever voter participation from Aboriginal people ever, the greatest number elected to parliament. It created a narrative within the political parties that it was an imperative. Idle No More was a warning to all parties that Aboriginal People would not sit by with promises being broken. And its work created a direct impact on party platforms in terms of promises that were substantive.

This non-party movement has created substantial impact on the parties themselves and I really do believe even if not all promises get filled it will have created real policy change.

So to me it is an example of a movement that was not partisan that did come back to influencing the parties.

I dislike and am opposed to the idea that all parties are the same or that things cannot be achieved through them. In fact some things can only be achieved through party politics including many of the objectives presumed to be within Idle No More. But the force for this came from outside but was exerted with a very strong understanding that you had to reach inside as well to shake things up. Idle No More retained an integrity by being outside but it kept a pressure with the political protest that meant that it was not just  a protest from a couple of years ago but a movement that has had a political impact and I certainly am confident will result in direct policy change.

I would define Idle No More as a movement that is an emerging success. The impact it has already had will bring real change.

I do think that where outside of parties movements that just seek to make noise do not achieve the same level of success unless making noise is the only objective. I think the Occupy movement has had less success than Idle No More and this will only grow in the future.

So in my opinion it is better to employ both extra partisan efforts and movements but you need to have a strategy of how to bring that to bear back where the power lies -- and that is in corporations, governments (at all levels) and to the public.

By the public I mean not just annoying them but getting them to understand something. Occupy with the "1%" discussion was able to change the culture so are successful there but they have had less political impact than INM. I think we are only starting to see what INM can do.

So when you say things must be done outside of parties I agree so long as there is an understanding that for some things to get done you exert that influence back on the parties in an effective way -- such as INM.

Sean in Ottawa

epaulo13 wrote:

..rest assured i don’t view your comments or questions as hostile.

..i see things different though sean so have another way of defining success. i say today party politics are failing canadians. i find it’s processes slow to respond and undemocratic. more interested in attaining power than making change. what i speak of is the hear and now. what do people do about climate/tarsands? parties are still unsure what to do because they are locked into the economics of capitalism as well as the global processes that prop it up.

..what has protected canadians so far has been the resistance. it’s been indigenous leadership that has limited expansion the most. and from this leadership comes today’s alliances. this is success for me. as are those posts i shared..all examples of how people have prospered when government and corporate forces have been against them. 

..maybe some time in the future parties will be different as some parties are ie qs. but not today. that future doesn’t concern me so much though. we must survive today’s assaults and this is what i see as the priority.

..lastly. what alliances that are being made today, what indigenous positions being taken are laying the basis for political discourse. this is setting the political agenda that governments

edit

Thank you

Pondering

iyraste1313 wrote:
   

´The Liberals are open to social programs that mitigate the harms of neoliberalism........´

perhaps in the immediate term...but within the context of a failing Canadian economy based on its dependence on a failing corporate globalization, our social programs are to be drowned in a sea of debt and hyperinflation...

No there is no alternative but to be promoting an real alternative based on national, regional and (indigenous) Territorial autonomy, where we regain control of our own economy, I call it a natural economy based on the processing and redistribution of our own resources, ecologically respected and fairtraded...surely we must learn from the disaster of venezuela, putting its resources into mitigation instead of building a real socialist economy from the ground up!

I only pointed out ´The Liberals are open to social programs that mitigate the harms of neoliberalism........´ as differenciating them from the Conservatives. I was in no way implying that it was sufficient. It actually presents a greater danger because social programs release enough pressure to keep the general public docile.

Canada isn't a failing economy. The conversation began with the suggestion that the Greens voting for BDS and the Liberals courting unions space was shrinking for the NDP. Liberal social programs also tread on NDP ground. The NDP sought to squeeze the Liberals, to take centrist positions to leave the Liberals no ground to stand on. Only that wasn't the outcome.

Opposing the trade deals not only on corporate rights but also their failure to protect worker rights and the right of communities to favor local businesses or pass environmental laws would rally almost every even mildly leftist Canadian. The NDP needs to take some risks.

CUPE is fighting CETA. If the NDP wants union loyalty they must be ready to take a clear stand on this huge deal pointing out the problematic areas and maybe even suggesting things like minimum corporate taxes be added to trade deals. Is that too radical to expect of the NDP?

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

..rest assured i don’t view your comments or questions as hostile.

..i see things different though sean so have another way of defining success. i say today party politics are failing canadians. i find it’s processes slow to respond and undemocratic. more interested in attaining power than making change. what i speak of is the hear and now. what do people do about climate/tarsands? parties are still unsure what to do because they are locked into the economics of capitalism as well as the global processes that prop it up.

..what has protected canadians so far has been the resistance. it’s been indigenous leadership that has limited expansion the most. and from this leadership comes today’s alliances. this is success for me. as are those posts i shared..all examples of how people have prospered when government and corporate forces have been against them. 

..maybe some time in the future parties will be different as some parties are ie qs. but not today. that future doesn’t concern me so much though. we must survive today’s assaults and this is what i see as the priority.

..lastly. what alliances that are being made today, what indigenous positions being taken are laying the basis for political discourse. this is setting the political agenda for governments.

edit

iyraste1313

can you share some other examples...from epaulo

..just returned from a quick visit to Cahabon, preparing their consulta popular within a few days...their elected mayor ran on a program of Territorial autonomy and won handily......the consulta is an international legal mechanism enshrined in Indigenous rights jurisprudence (something I wish the Indigenous Nations of Canada would take  a look at!)...

If this process is not blocked, a vote would guarantee the regional government total control over the prospects of Canadian nickel mining in the Territory (Anfield Nickel on the Toronto stock exchange).....but this movement is not just limited to corporate resistance...the territory is a powerful agricultural centre producing vast quantities of crops of the highest quality and most cherished crops on the planet, such as cacao for chocolate, sugarcane, cardamom, cinnamom, allspice etc.

Presently we are engaged ina fairtrade project with the regional government, that would turn control over marketing and processing to the regional government and popular assemblies of the communities....

iyraste1313

¨..maybe some time in the future parties will be different as some parties are ie qs. but not today....¨

This is where I strenuously differ....a holistic movement must engage in the political process, but where the party apparatus must be defined under the control of the movement and through its popular assembly process.

Guarantees must be put into place that the party apparatus maintain its priority of truth over political expediency.

These are the necessary conditions  in support of the antiglobalist and social justice movement in Canada...otherwise the movement will always be strangled by legalistic and legislative forces...these forces must be incorporated into a peoples movement

epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

iyraste1313 wrote:

..maybe some time in the future parties will be different as some parties are ie qs. but not today....¨

This is where I strenuously differ....a holistic movement must engage in the political process, but where the party apparatus must be defined under the control of the movement and through its popular assembly process.

Guarantees must be put into place that the party apparatus maintain its priority of truth over political expediency.

These are the necessary conditions  in support of the antiglobalist and social justice movement in Canada...otherwise the movement will always be strangled by legalistic and legislative forces...these forces must be incorporated into a peoples movement

.while i do have my druthers this doesn't prevent me from laying that aside and considering your position. i've been doing that for some time and we had our share of exchanges.

..so i want to point out that i don't see how what you are describing is going to happen when no one is calling for a new party in this resistance. and also there is no holistic movement ether if what you mean is a joining of all movements under 1 umbrella. nor is there a call to do that.

..so can you show how this party will happen please? it’s time line and trajectory please.

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