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NDP Leadership 83

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Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Oops - I wrote somewhere that Saganash has yet to have a good debate performance - and just now remembered that he won the French debate - in Ottawa, I think.

ETA: Saganash has an opportunity to be awesome in the Quebec City debate in two weeks.

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nicky

I was at a recent meeting where Mulcair was asked about PR and clearly said he supported it. He also said that although it would not require a constitututional amendment it was such a fundamental change that it was "quasi-costitutional" and that therefore a broad consensus would be required.

Since the Liberals and Greens (and perhaps) BQ wd be on board I would think a broad consensus is very achievable. 

Howard

The NDP's plunge continues. In a new poll by Leger Marketing for the Montreal Gazette and Le Devoir there is a tie: BQ 27 NDP 27

The last CROP poll had the NDP at 29. These numbers are getting irredeemable.

People should check out the French scores from the last debate. Chantal Hébert called Dewar "unintelligble" and

Chantal Hébert wrote:
French scores: A:Topp/Mulcair/Saganash B:Cullen/Singh/Nash/Ashton C:Dewar (en progrès mais devra faire encore mieux).

nicky

Stockholm wrote:

"I think you're being a bit histrionic about the polls in Quebec and about what they mean in terms of who to elect as leader. I say that as someone who is still totally undecided and who may vote for Mulcair in the end. Yes, its true that right now - largely due to name recognition - Mulcair SEEMS like the one best positioned to hold on to Quebec. But polls also suggested in 2009 that with Michael Ignatieff, the Liberals would sweep Quebec and I still remember those polls showing Liberal support going up to SIXTY PERCENT if only they would make Paul martin their leader. Some people think Mulcair would be a winner in Quebec, but there are also some NDP opinion leaders in Quebec who think otherwise. I respect the opinion of Francoise Boivin and Alexandre Boulerice a lot and they for some reason think that Brian Topp would better. I also respect Pierre Ducasse and Marjolaine Boutin-Sweet and Dany Morin a lot - and they think Peggy nash would be better. There are clearly people in the NDp in Quebec who are not so sure that Mulcair is necessarily the be all and the end all."

 

There comes a point where we cannot simply ignore the polls as reflecting name recognition or because of margin of error.

 

The signs that Mulcair is best positioned to safeguard the Quebec advances are overwhelming.
1. Quebec media support.
2, The backing of the great majority of the Quebec caucus.
3. The poll in Sept showing that he would add 10% to the NDP vote in Quebec. On the other hand Topp would lose us 10%
4. Last week's Abacus poll (with a large sample) which indicated that SIXTY-TWO PER CENT of Quebecer would be more likely to support the NDP if he were leader. Topp had 8% and no one else even registered. These numbers are just too stark to explain away.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Howard, regarding the CROP Poll, sorry, all I can say is, whatever.

JeffWells

I don't think individual polls deserve much attention until the scene "normalizes," which will be no sooner than the end of March and possibly as late as the Liberal leadership convention. It's natural the NDP was going to see a deflation while the party turned inward and the media's scornful ignorance of it went unchallenged. Of course, getting the leadership choice right will go some way to reversing that trend.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Great comment Jeff!

GregbythePond

The only poll that will matter will be the one in 2015.

That being said, I think the frontrunners performed (cautiously) well in the Halifax debate and avoided any major blunders. However, I also believe that the potential is there for some major embarrassments in Quebec City. There are several current candidates whose energies (and donor contributions) would be better spent working on someone else's team. I think the field needs to be cut in half. It is unfortunate that either egos, hubris or an exagerated sense of the importance of a single issue has kept too many in the race and has both clouded our message and reduced the airtime for the frontrunners to make the points they need to make.

KenS

When you do something as insane as enter a national leadership race, 'in for a penny, in for a pound' does not begin to capture what it is like. You do not do it unless you intend to finish the job.

And barring the entire edifice OBVIOUSLY collapsing around you, people do not quit even when they can tell it has got somewhat worse than longshot odds.

On top of that, the simple act of having the advance preferential ballot makes it FAR more difficult for a leadership candidate to get something out of supporting another candidate. [Something like a promise to take up their favoured policy/strategy, and some kind of assured working relationship around that.]

 

KenS

nicky wrote:

There comes a point where we cannot simply ignore the polls as reflecting name recognition or because of margin of error.

....

These numbers are just too stark to explain away.

I'll just point out that there is a long history here on babble- way before the leadership races- of a number of us disputing the way you use 'numbers' as if they were self-evident arguments.

And part of it is evident in the framing of that opening sentence- that trivializes the arguments of others by hopelessly reducing them.

 

KenS

Even getting the leadership choice 'wrong' will go along way to ending the vaccuum that allows free reign the the 'natural state' of that chattering ignorance in the echo chamber.

One side detail that was probably missed by those watching the debate from away, was how special the moderator was. A lot of you probably noted that it was unusual to have an MSM columinist moderating the debate. But it was more than that. Other than reading his columns I dont know much about Dan Leger. And yes he is an ex-editor, and probably retired [?].... but journalists take the supposed objectivity of their role awfully seriously. So retired or not, and presumably not being self identifying as NDP even if he typically votes for the party... I was impressed. And it probably speaks to how and/or whay we have always got very even handed treatment from the NS media, despite their rootedness in small c comservativism. But that would be the Nova Scotia way. Also reflected in how the audience did as told and mostly refrained from applause.

Dan Leger probably has some skill and experience at moderating, but there may be a lesson there that we are probably best to go outside party ranks for a moderator. An outsider is not going to feel the distraction of trying to keep their preferences out of the picture; and while being aware of the sacred cows, might be more willing to tread on them somewhat.

The format was designed around a more active role for the moderator than merely reading questions and ref / timekeeping. I think that worked well, and the moderator could even be more 'injecting'... which DL said he had the mandate to exercise, but did not do it.

GregbythePond

You are right KenS, I forgot personal self-interest as a motivator!

What ever happened to, "What's best for the party ..."?Wink

I think there is a greater chance that your issues will be taken seriously by gratiously withdrawing (for the common good, one might say) and joining up with another campaign. As opposed to hanging on - till the bitter end - and being trounced/dropped off in the first rounds of voting by the membership - thus providing evidence that your ideas are less then useful to the collective mind.

mark_alfred

nicky wrote:

 

Since the Liberals and Greens (and perhaps) BQ wd be on board [for proportional representation] I would think a broad consensus is very achievable. 

Since when are the Liberals in favour of proportional representation?

KenS

I dont think it is just or mostly self interest. People are pursuing what they genuinely see as in the party's best interest. If you dont believe that, you cant be in this race. The same goes for withdrawing from it- its not just something you want for yourself if you are going to withdraw. No one can sepearte those of course- but that does not make what you want for the party any less real or pressing.

And withdrawing for the general good of the party just does not have the concrete resonance of getting another campaign to make credible commitments to whatever agenda you think is crucial.

The issues you thought were important will survive 5 minutes on the glow of your gracious withdrawl. While even the initial drop-offs from the voting are going to have more cachet in party deliberations. I dont think any candidate is at risk of embarrasing themself like Robert Chisholm was. [And I dont think even his cachet will suffer.]

nicky

Bob Rae just endorsed PR. 

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

nicky wrote:

Bob Rae just endorsed PR. 

And the Liberal policy convention endorsed something totally different.

writer writer's picture

Quote:

Light on the water
A portrait of MP Romeo Saganash

“She had her crew with her, my sister, so they filmed the scene where they were looking for him,” Romeo says. “And we hear the other lady say, ‘well, you are standing on your little brother.’ And she crumbled in the snow – it was winter, and she crumbled.”

A break in the conversation – the impossible decision of whether to tell his mother. Finally, he shows her the film that Emma made of that day.

“I have seen my mom – cry – many, many times. Many times in my life,” Romeo tells me. There are tears in his eyes now.

“But never the way she cried that day. Never.”

 

KenS

After the Toronto debate there were a number of comments about how all the candidates have shown considerable improvement in presenting themselves.

Maybe it not being news anymore is why there is a bit less of that in comments this time. But I think it came across even more this time.

Keep in mind that with the exception of Mulcair this is WAY beyond anything like what they have done before- inculding the most of them that are MPs. And Tom is only partialy an exception in that he has considerable experience being in the limelight and on the hot seat right now- but even for him, nothing like this.

I've noticed in particular the improvement of the consensus two weakest in starting: Topp and Nash.

Peggy Nash. A few people seemed to see Peggy as having gone off flat last night. Someone else already said what I noted right off: we were told not to applaud, and mostly did as told. Here's my take on Peggy. She's been working hard at 'the wooden thing'... even acting flustered at times. She's not like that in person. So when you work on that, you adapt what works for you to the stage presence that has not been working. I think she succeded at that. But its still new. It's a work in progress for her, so she got the part she has been working on right. But while concentrating on that, she missed part two: paying attention to the audience. She's learning fast, she'll get it right.

Brian Topp had even more to work on. Not even the limited experience that comes with running for and being an MP. And a fairly quiet guy to boot. So he's far from natural, has a number of nervous tics, and the time constraints are even worse for his desire and capacity to frame larger ideas. While Brian's progress on stage has been noted, I think like Peggy a lot of it is being missed because people are looking at the 'final product' rather than the work in progress. Before Toronto Brian obviously worked on both not running over his time, and of getting what he had to say across more quickly. But it was still brand new for him, so there were a couple times when he just stopped abruply with time still on the clock. I happened to be sitting behind the lo tech timekeeper in the Halifax debate, with his big home made flash cards of seconds remaining. Brian was the one most consistently staying in his time, and he seemed to have the pacing down for what he wanted to say. I've seen comments here that people still see him as forced [or something like that]. I think thats to be expected for someone who is still developing what works for them.

 

mark_alfred

Idealistic Pragmatist wrote:

nicky wrote:

Bob Rae just endorsed PR. 

And the Liberal policy convention endorsed something totally different.

I'm guessing it was Instant Runoff Voting (IRV) which is not a suitable replacement for proportional representation.  Regardless of Rae's views, the Liberal Party has always been opposed to proportional representation.

KenS

Hunky_Monkey wrote:

If we get a cap-and-trade system, a national childcare program, and pharmacare which are some of Mulcair's top priorities, I'll be happy.

Me too.

And those are on everyone's agendas- whether or not they make it explicit.

The differences would the guesses we all make in the odds that we will GET them with the different leader prospects.

Policywonk wrote:

Assuming the cap-and-trade system works. The devil is in the details.

And part first, part MOST, of whether it gets a chance to work or fail in government, is how it is sold to the people of Canada.

That was not a good start, Mulcair answering Topp's question about his plan to increase taxes on the wealthy, that we should instead be getting our revenue increases from cap and trade. Which he also said on another occasion last night.

The NDP's policy package that cap and trade is the heart of sees all those revenues, necessarily plus some general revenues in the first years, going to the green spending initiatives and the transfers to low income households to cover the broad increases in costs from carbon pricing working into the system. Those expenditures of the cap and trade revenues are not just the right policy thing to do, they are the material basis of getting political acceptance of cap and trade.

 

mark_alfred

KenS wrote:

That was not a good start, Mulcair answering Topp's question about his plan to increase taxes on the wealthy, that we should instead be getting our revenue increases from cap and trade. Which he also said on another occasion last night.

I haven't yet seen the debate, but if cap and trade is how Mulcair is planning to fund programs other than specifically environmental ones, then that's not a wise direction.  The NDP was critical of this aspect of Dion's so-called green shift, so implementing cap and trade with a similar proviso of using the revenue it generates for other expenditures (IE, health care or whatever) would be hypocritical.

Stockholm

JKR wrote "Also, it is not the right-wing parties that pull out all the stops to keep the NDP out of power, it's the corporate elite. The politicians in the Reform and PC parties did not want a merger. The corporate elite did."

I have news for you...who do you think pulls the strings in the Liberal party of Canada?? Answer: the corporate elite. In fact the corporate elite likes the federal liberals much more than the like the federal Tories. If Canada had PR - you better believe that the corporate elite that controls the Liberal Party would exert EXTREME pressure on the Liberal rump to keep the tories in power and keep out the NDP. If you look in Europe (where they have PR) this is the consistent pattern - liberal parties almost ALWAYS side with conservative parties to keep out social democratic parties.

Howard

Howard wrote:

The NDP's plunge continues. In a new poll by Leger Marketing for the Montreal Gazette and Le Devoir there is a tie: BQ 27 NDP 27

The last CROP poll had the NDP at 29. These numbers are getting irredeemable.

People should check out the French scores from the last debate. Chantal Hébert called Dewar "unintelligble" and

Chantal Hébert wrote:
French scores: A:Topp/Mulcair/Saganash B:Cullen/Singh/Nash/Ashton C:Dewar (en progrès mais devra faire encore mieux).

Nanos on QC: NDP 29 Lib 27 BQ 24

Canada: CPC 36 LIB 28 NDP 25

Until it stabilizes Jeff Wells? What is the source of the instability...on yeah, the NDP numbers plummeting.

JKR

Stockholm wrote:

If Canada had PR - you better believe that the corporate elite that controls the Liberal Party would exert EXTREME pressure on the Liberal rump to keep the tories in power and keep out the NDP. If you look in Europe (where they have PR) this is the consistent pattern - liberal parties almost ALWAYS side with conservative parties to keep out social democratic parties.

If we had PR and the Liberals raison d'etre became maintaining Conservative governments, the Liberals would lose at least half of their  supporters. If this were the case, PR would force the Liberals to out themselves as corporate lackeys.

Under FPTP we can be led by a right-wing government that has the support of a little more than 1/3rd of the electorate.  PR would allow parties  that receive 61% of the vote to determine who governs Canada instead of allowing a party with 39% to rule unopposed. PR would force the corporate elite to have to cobble together political parties that represents at least 50% of the electorate in order to take power.

It's no coincidence that social democratic countries have PR. [eg ---> Sweden whose capital is Stockholm]

It's no coincidence that the corporate elite supports FPTP.

JeffWells

Howard wrote:

Until it stabilizes Jeff Wells? What is the source of the instability...on yeah, the NDP numbers plummeting.

What I said was

JeffWells wrote:

I don't think individual polls deserve much attention until the scene "normalizes," which will be no sooner than the end of March and possibly as late as the Liberal leadership convention.

The reasons for the dropping numbers are obvious, unavoidable and temporary. There's always a reason for watchfulness but no cause now for great alarm. It's more than three years before the next election and that's more than enough time for a new leader to make an impact. Nycole Turmel's uninspiring interregnum will be long forgotten.

Stockholm

Except that in several FPTP countries like the UK and Australia and for many years in New Zealand - social democratic parties won majorities under FPTP.

Funny you should mention Sweden. Right now Sweden is governed by a so-called "bourgeois coalition" of the centre right that consiets of the Moderate party (conservative), the Centre party (farmers), the Christian Democrats (bible thumpers) and the Liberal Party. In Sweden the Liberals (who tend to be the party of highly educated professionals) would NEVER in a hundred million years ever support a social democratic party government that would favour their class enemies etc... it is a given in Sweden and across Scandinavia that Liberals ALWAYS 100% of the time, form alliances with conservatives to STOP social democrats. I think the same would happen in Canada under PR.

theleftyinvestor

It looks like 22 Minutes is gearing up to air a spoof NDP leadership debate following their convergence in Halifax.

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150520562508339&set=a.101505126... Nash and Cullen... debating in Spanish?

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150520562698339&set=a.101505126... Saganash versus Mulcair

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150521930953339&set=a.101505126... Ashton versus Dewar

http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10150521960983339&set=a.101505126... Brian Topp... as Anne of Green Gables?

Stockholm

JeffWells wrote:

 Nycole Turmel's uninspiring interregnum will be long forgotten.

Exactly, does anyone remember who was the uninspriring interim Liberal leader for about a year in 1989-1990 when the Liberals seemed in disarray and in danger of falling behind the NDP?? (ANSWER: Herb Gray). btw: The Liberals went on to win a landslide majority in 1993

Does anyone remember where the federal Tories/Canadian Alliance were at in 2001/2002? Reminder, the PCs were leaderless and in disarray and the Canadian Alliance was split down the middle over the Stockwell day disaster and they were polling in single digits. The interim leader was John Reynolds (who???). Look at who is in power today??

CanadaApple

KenS wrote:

After the Toronto debate there were a number of comments about how all the candidates have shown considerable improvement in presenting themselves.

Maybe it not being news anymore is why there is a bit less of that in comments this time. But I think it came across even more this time.

Keep in mind that with the exception of Mulcair this is WAY beyond anything like what they have done before- inculding the most of them that are MPs. And Tom is only partialy an exception in that he has considerable experience being in the limelight and on the hot seat right now- but even for him, nothing like this.

I've noticed in particular the improvement of the consensus two weakest in starting: Topp and Nash.

Peggy Nash. A few people seemed to see Peggy as having gone off flat last night. Someone else already said what I noted right off: we were told not to applaud, and mostly did as told. Here's my take on Peggy. She's been working hard at 'the wooden thing'... even acting flustered at times. She's not like that in person. So when you work on that, you adapt what works for you to the stage presence that has not been working. I think she succeded at that. But its still new. It's a work in progress for her, so she got the part she has been working on right. But while concentrating on that, she missed part two: paying attention to the audience. She's learning fast, she'll get it right.

Brian Topp had even more to work on. Not even the limited experience that comes with running for and being an MP. And a fairly quiet guy to boot. So he's far from natural, has a number of nervous tics, and the time constraints are even worse for his desire and capacity to frame larger ideas. While Brian's progress on stage has been noted, I think like Peggy a lot of it is being missed because people are looking at the 'final product' rather than the work in progress. Before Toronto Brian obviously worked on both not running over his time, and of getting what he had to say across more quickly. But it was still brand new for him, so there were a couple times when he just stopped abruply with time still on the clock. I happened to be sitting behind the lo tech timekeeper in the Halifax debate, with his big home made flash cards of seconds remaining. Brian was the one most consistently staying in his time, and he seemed to have the pacing down for what he wanted to say. I've seen comments here that people still see him as forced [or something like that]. I think thats to be expected for someone who is still developing what works for them.

 

I agree that Nash and Topp have improved. Saganash has as well I think.

On a slightly different topic, will the Quebec City debate be done in all french?

 

CanadaApple

Stockholm wrote:

Except that in several FPTP countries like the UK and Australia and for many years in New Zealand - social democratic parties won majorities under FPTP.

Funny you should mention Sweden. Right now Sweden is governed by a so-called "bourgeois coalition" of the centre right that consiets of the Moderate party (conservative), the Centre party (farmers), the Christian Democrats (bible thumpers) and the Liberal Party. In Sweden the Liberals (who tend to be the party of highly educated professionals) would NEVER in a hundred million years ever support a social democratic party government that would favour their class enemies etc... it is a given in Sweden and across Scandinavia that Liberals ALWAYS 100% of the time, form alliances with conservatives to STOP social democrats. I think the same would happen in Canada under PR.

Australia uses AV, or whatever it might be called there.

Howard

CanadaApple wrote:

On a slightly different topic, will the Quebec City debate be done in all french?

I have no information on this but I would hope it would be all French + 1 English question. Kind of like the way debates in English Canada have been run. Otherwise, I'm sure we will hear some mighty bleating from the NDP's enemies in the punditsphere.

Howard

JeffWells wrote:

Howard wrote:

Until it stabilizes Jeff Wells? What is the source of the instability...on yeah, the NDP numbers plummeting.

What I said was

JeffWells wrote:

I don't think individual polls deserve much attention until the scene "normalizes," which will be no sooner than the end of March and possibly as late as the Liberal leadership convention.

The reasons for the dropping numbers are obvious, unavoidable and temporary. There's always a reason for watchfulness but no cause now for great alarm. It's more than three years before the next election and that's more than enough time for a new leader to make an impact. Nycole Turmel's uninspiring interregnum will be long forgotten.

I'm sorry for misattributing your words. I remain highly concerned with the NDP's fall.

Howard

writer wrote:

Quote:

Light on the water
A portrait of MP Romeo Saganash

“She had her crew with her, my sister, so they filmed the scene where they were looking for him,” Romeo says. “And we hear the other lady say, ‘well, you are standing on your little brother.’ And she crumbled in the snow – it was winter, and she crumbled.”

A break in the conversation – the impossible decision of whether to tell his mother. Finally, he shows her the film that Emma made of that day.

“I have seen my mom – cry – many, many times. Many times in my life,” Romeo tells me. There are tears in his eyes now.

“But never the way she cried that day. Never.”

Amazing article.

Stockholm

I think Saganash would make a great Governor-General once the NDP forms a government and Johnston's term is up.

Unionist

Or what about Saganash as PM and Mulcair as Governor-General?

We've already had a G-G named Romeo. Time for a Tom?

 

Fidel

Stockholm wrote:
In Sweden the Liberals (who tend to be the party of highly educated professionals) would NEVER in a hundred million years ever support a social democratic party government that would favour their class enemies etc... it is a given in Sweden and across Scandinavia that Liberals ALWAYS 100% of the time, form alliances with conservatives to STOP social democrats.
 

Which is probably why they only have 7% of seats in the Riksdag. The Liberals are considered a fringe right party in Sweden and are rewarded for it proportionally and not strategically.

Stockholm

Fidel wrote:

Stockholm wrote:
In Sweden the Liberals (who tend to be the party of highly educated professionals) would NEVER in a hundred million years ever support a social democratic party government that would favour their class enemies etc... it is a given in Sweden and across Scandinavia that Liberals ALWAYS 100% of the time, form alliances with conservatives to STOP social democrats.
 

Which is probably why they only have 7% of seats in the Riksdag. The Liberals are considered a fringe right party in Sweden and are rewarded for it proportionally and not strategically.

If we had PR in Canada, I think the Liberals would quickly become a small "boutique" party for high educated high income professionals (i.e. Canada's version of the German FDP or "the party of doctors and dentists") and they would consistently get their 30-35 seats from about 10% of the vote and they would become a semi-permanent coalition partner to the Conservatives.

writer writer's picture

8th Fire Q&A: Diom Roméo Saganash

"I do the same thing as my father, except my territory is larger."

Whose land is it anyway? 8th Fire, episode 3

 

Fidel

I have a hard time arguing with you. Youre just no fun anymore, Stockholmer.

dacckon dacckon's picture

Of course the polls are falling, as they did in the election.

 

But then we rose up, whats not to say it won't happen again and again?

JKR

Stockholm wrote:

Except that in several FPTP countries like the UK and Australia and for many years in New Zealand - social democratic parties won majorities under FPTP.

Funny you should mention Sweden....

So why haven't the "big tent" left parties in the UK, New Zealand, Australia, and the US been able to replicate the much better record of social democrats in PR countries like Sweden, Denmark, Norway, Finland, Belgium, Netherlands, Finland, etc...? Why is it that left-wing governments in FPTP countries seem unable to match the levels of social democracy of even the right-wing governments in PR countries?

The key difference between FPTP and PR is that FPTP is a rigid two-party system while PR is a flexible multi-party system.  FPTP tends to create two big tent parties that are very difficult to replace because adding more parties causes vote splitting. The corporate elite understands this and thus they always back one Conservative Party and if they are lucky they back another party if it causes vote splitting on the left. And since it is very difficult to establish new parties with FPTP, corporate elites find it easy to influence leftish parties like the NDP without the fear that this will result in the creation of new left-wing parties.

 As it is under FPTP, the "social democratic" NDP can't easily call for raising taxes on the top 1%. Saganash's question to Topp was very revealing. Is Topp playing into the hands of the Conservative attack machine by mentioning tax increases on the very wealthy? Being a diehard social democrat Topp effectively defended raising taxes by showing that:

 If Mitt Romney were Canadian, he would pay even less tax!

Quote:

 But if Romney were filing Canadian taxes, we estimate he would have paid even less, even though Canada’s tax rates are generally considered to be substantially higher than the U.S.

Running the U.S. numbers on a Canadian return, assuming no foreign currency adjustment and assuming his dividends would be Canadian dividends had he lived in Canada, Romney would have paid $2,973,021 of Canadian federal tax in 2011 on his $20.9-million of income, which translates to an effective federal tax rate of only 14.2%, more than a percentage off the 15.4% he is forecast to pay.

Social democratic parties in PR countries like Sweden would have no difficulty critisizing a taxation system that is even more favourable to bilionaires then the US's. And because of that, these PR countries have taxation levels that have been able to produce more egalitarian societies then the FPTP countries.

How would members of the corporate elite have felt watching the NDP convention? Wouldn't they have felt reassured that Canada's left-wing party can only go as far as raising taxes via cap and trade in order to create a fairer society? And wouldn't they thank their lucky stars that FPTP has safeguarded their priveledge to such a great extent?

Stockholm

Don't get me wrong. I support moving to a system of PR. But I also think we are being delusional if we assume for one second that when push comes to shove - the Liberal Party will EVER put the NDP in power when all of their Bay St. masters will read them the riot act and demand that they prop up the Tories.

Proportional representation is a better system on principle - but we should not make the mistake of assuming that it will result in "more progressive" government. New Zealand has MMP and right now they have a rightwing coalition in power.

JKR

Stockholm wrote:

If we had PR in Canada, I think the Liberals would quickly become a small "boutique" party for high educated high income professionals (i.e. Canada's version of the German FDP or "the party of doctors and dentists") and they would consistently get their 30-35 seats from about 10% of the vote and they would become a semi-permanent coalition partner to the Conservatives.

If we had PR in Canada, I think the NDP would quickly become a more roubust supporter of social democratic policies. If not, a new left party would fill that role and the NDP would be a more centrist-left party. Maybe Topp, Nash, Mulcair, and Saganash, would all lead different centre-left and left parties and form a coalition government that would produce the kinds of social democratic policies we see in places like Sweden?

dacckon dacckon's picture

The policies in Scandinavia occured not due to PR but mostly due to the post-war concensus where a new spirit filled the people of Europe. Many, many majority governments by social democrats. Little, little interference by liberals.

TheArchitect

Three Nova Scotia MLAs, including one cabinet minister, have endorsed Peggy Nash today.  These are Lunenburg MLA Pam Birdsall, Queens MLA Vicki Conrad, and Dartmouth South—Portland Valley MLA Marilyn More, who holds several portfolios, including Labour, Advanced Education and Immigration in the Dexter Government.

http://peggynash.ca/2012/nova-scotia-mlas-back-peggy-nash-for-ndp-leader...

Stockholm

Several countries in Europe like Germany and the netherlands developed very advanced welfare states post-war despite having Christian Democrat as opposed to social democrat governments. Bismark created the first public health care system in Germany and he is regarded as a rightwinger

socialdemocrati...

This is the essence of my name. If you look outside Canada to the broader community of democracies... you'll notice that there aren't very many right-wing parties who would dare campaign on dismantling health care. The consensus is the best economy is a mixed economy: public models for necessities, and private models for wealth-creation, with lots of shades in between.

A big part of forcing a government to represent that social democratic middle is a more proportional voting system. It's not just about electing full-on socialist parties to government. It's also about forcing the so-called centrist parties towards the true political center, representing the broad base of working people.

I would rather a Liberal party that has to compete with the NDP in the actual popular vote and form a coalitiion, rather than an NDP that obliterates and replaces the Liberal party on the center-right.

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