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When will we see a fightback against Harper's austerity

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Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

Tonight is casseroles night in Canada (Ottawa last night, maybe tonight as well?) and it's not just in solidarity with the Quebec students, it can also be anti-Harper. And it's gone international, with marches scheduled in Denver, Colorado, Paris, and who knows where else. The FB page where this is being orchestrated says it will be ongoing until we get rid of Harper. Smile


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

Left Turn-- I realize you may not agree with others about tactics. However, I resent the suggestion that because people are not doing, or at least not seen by you to be doing, what you want them to do that you can assume that is because they are fat cats (6 figure salaries), lazy, bought, gutless or otherwise. I'd go so far as to say I think it is presumptuous, even arrogant, to presume that you alone know the best strategy and that those who are not following it are being disloyal to the cause.

Ironically, the cause is actually doing much better than a few months ago in spite of the Con majority and media toadying from the most unrepentant reformatory hacks.

The CPC are down in the polls, articles about the labour movement have taken a more union-positive tone than I have seen in a generation, public policies that labour is promoting are being discussed, the government is being questioned for its direction and Conservative ideology is becoming less of a national religion. And the Cons are now falling to the number two position in the polls for the longest period since 2005.

All the main objectives of a national demonstration is being met without the downside risks of turning the public against us.

There is a tone to the discussion. There is a public mood that will express itself. It may be very positive for labour to support that public mood and encourage it rather than be seen to be trying to manipulate it or threaten it. Labour will move publicly more and more as it is empowered by public support.

I don't think this government is going to be toppled right now and the strategy as I see it looks logical over the next couple years. Building support before demonstrating what you have is not a bad idea.

Don't think that national labour organizations are doing nothing or selling you out.


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

I personally think that there needs to be more citizen-initiated activity-- Left Turn -- organize demonstrations if you want-- invite the CLC and see if they show up. You may be surprised.

I have been to events with the CLC where union activists were asked to not bring signs because they did not want to take away from the citizen's initiatives that they were. You might have more support from labour than you realize.


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

Sean both my wife and I share much of Left Turn's analysis.  I don't hear him blaming the hardworking union agents and support staff. i hear him talking about a structure that is top down and controlled by the bean counters [i.e. bureaucrats] in every union.  My wife is a business rep for a union and that was also one of my jobs during my working life. One can have a lot of respect for the union movement and its thousands of activists and still think Georgetti and his ilk are not only bad at their jobs but a hindrance to movement building.

By the way your description of hiding your union colours is a practice my wife has been railing against for decades. I believe she has spoken on the issue at more than one BC Fed convention.  No wonder Canadians think unions are irrelevant.


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

Unions like to show colours but at times when you go to an event organized by someone else you can take it over and that was what they were trying not to do-- support with people but not take it over. I respect that. They don't hide their colours at their own events

 


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

I mean as individuals. Flags and banners at other organizations rallies are not appropriate unless they are okay for all.  When union people do things in the community including standing with their neigbours I think they should literally wear their believes on their sleeves and other clothing areas. In BC the rallies organized by the Fed are always large and peaceful and have never gotten a single thing out of the neo-cons. At most rallies in BC there are banners from political parties sometimes including NDP associations as well as union locals.  The grass roots of the union movement needs to be proudly union when engaging with other activists.  I believe that is how you build bridges between the union movement and other social justice movements.


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

I agree Kropotkin


Brachina
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Joined: Feb 15 2012
I support protesting the austerity as much as anyone, but whoever sent the body parts to Tory HQ went too far.

Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

Please let's not assume even in jest that this was a political protest.

We don't know any of that. There are several other possible motivations that have nothing to do with policy or ideology.

 


Vansterdam Kid
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Joined: Apr 15 2004

It doesn't sound political at all. According to Gawker (news source!), the guy was pretty mentally disturbed so it sounds like a psychopathic one off - not a political statement at all.


Left Turn
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Joined: Mar 28 2005

Just got this e-mail about a national day of action this Saturday against the Conservative's omnibus budget bill -- a series of ralies at Conservative MP offices being organized by Leadnow.ca.

Love Democracy. Fight Back. Stand Against the Federal Budget Bill.

Quote:
Since the Harper Conservatives announced their Omnibus Budget Bill, more and more Canadians are rallying against a Bill that would put a black mark on our democracy. Now, we're writing to invite you to join a national day of action at Conservative MP offices, and supporting locations, across Canada this Saturday, June 2nd.

Even some traditional Conservative allies are now saying that the Harper Conservatives have gone too far. Last week, David Wilks, a Conservative MP, told a small group of his constituents that he, and many other Conservative MPs, were deeply troubled by the Budget Bill and that he would consider voting against it if 12 of his colleagues, enough to stop the bill, stood with him.[1] A day later, after receiving intense pressure from the Harper Conservatives, Wilks publicly reversed his position.

It's time to stand up. This Saturday, we'll gather at Conservative MP offices and support locations to bring Canadians together in opposition to a Bill that contains a sweeping agenda to remake Canadian society. And, we'll shine a spotlight on the Conservative MPs who can stop the bill, split it apart and start over by inviting Canadians to help them make better laws.


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004
The G&M weighs in: Activists gear up for multi-pronged protest against Tory budget bill link: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/ottawa-notebook/activists-g... ps: who turned off the hotlinking???

NDPP
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Joined: Dec 28 2008

Who Will Preserve the Past for Future Generations  -  by JL Granatstein

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/commentary/who-will-preserve-the-past-for...

"...the treatment of Library Archives Canada will hurt research and scholarship now and forever. It shows nothing, so much as contempt for the past and, regrettably, for the future as well."


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004


NDPP
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Joined: Dec 28 2008

Walkom: Beware Politicians Preaching Restraint

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1210254--walkom-bewa...

"...In Ottawa the alibi of restraint has been taken to absurd lengths. Here Prime Mininster Stephen Harper's Conservatives have engaged in a series of precision bombing raids, blasting out specific parts of the federal bureaucracy that they fear might get in the way of the government or its friends. Why have they nuked the Inspector-General of The Canadian Security and Intelligence Service - an official whose job is to assure that the government knows what the spy agency is up to?

When Canadian Press reporter Bruce Cheadle first unearthed this particular tidbit, the official explanation was restraint. The real explanation, presumably, is to make sure that the government [ or the public] doesn't know too much about what CSIS is doing (particularly given its new mandate to use information gleaned through torture), That way, ministers can be provided with the cover of plausible deniability.

And as in Ontario, federal restraint means scaling back health and safety inspections in everything from the environment to meat-packing. The laws remain on the books. But if no one checks up on industry (which is being encouraged to self-regulate), such laws mean nothing..."


Michael Moriarity
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Joined: Jul 27 2001

If it worked in Latvia, surely it will work here.


Ippurigakko
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Joined: May 30 2011

.... I wonder if it is part of Nunavut's high cost/price of food? Nutrition North Canada?

recently we have protest in all nunavut communities against high cost. And we will have another protest on Aboriginal Day and Nunavut Day.

 


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

This is shaping up to be the year of demonstrations like none other. Here's another:  

 July 1st, 2012

La Journee Nationale Pour Arreter Harper/National Stop Harper Day


onlinediscountanvils
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Joined: Jun 7 2012

kropotkin1951 wrote:

One can have a lot of respect for the union movement and its thousands of activists and still think Georgetti and his ilk are not only bad at their jobs but a hindrance to movement building.

 

CLC sells out students!

Quote:

Recent correspondence from Ken Georgetti (President of the Canada Labour Congress) and Michel Arsenault of the FTQ (Provincial Labour Central of Quebec) and various officers in the broader Anglophone Labour Movement sends a clear message: labour jurisdiction trumps labour solidarity. Georgetti and Arsenault believe that this is the time to “facilitate a settlement instead of fueling fires”.

Ken Georgetti says the “radical elements” are not to be supported in order to facilitate an agreement. To him an agreement in itself is more important than a victory for the students and workers of Quebec. Again his message is clear, class peace at all costs. He says the students are tired and have been fighting a long time as a reason why they should not be supported. This is pathetic.

Quote:

Let’s be clear, union leaders work for union members. They are not at the top of a chain of command and if the leadership want to use the unions as a tool to obstruct solidarity instead of facilitate it then the leadership should be ignored or discarded. The CLASSE did this through their mass assemblies and so can we.

Quote:

Solidarity is not an empty slogan, it is an act of defiance against a world dominated by greed and narrow self-interest. We need to ask Georgetti, Arsenault, and the rest of the labour movement: Which side are you on?


kropotkin1951
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Joined: Jun 6 2002

I have met Ken personally on many occasions.  He has never been a worker. His daddy was the head of the Steelworkers Local in Trail when he was growing up. He went to work for a few months after graduating and then got elected to a union position and rose very quickly up to the top jobs.  In committees he runs a really good railroad. He has been one of the people in the union movement that has hindered the fight back in every battle. He inherited a strong and vibrant union movement from his fathers generation but him and his ilk don't fight they just go backwards bit by bit year after year. He is always looking for labour peace no matter what it costs the membership in the long term.


Arthur Cramer
Online
Joined: Nov 30 2010

Just on P&P. Nanos was on and said his number is 55. that is 55%, 55% of Canadians are negatively disposed to taxes. And the CBC guy said well isn't this a threat to the NDP? Don't they have to be carefull now. Then cut away to Harper teling the Europeans auteriy,austerity, austerity. I hate the CBC. Isn't there anyone there who isn't going to side with economic current wisdon? What a load of you know what!


Boom Boom
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Joined: Dec 29 2004

I don't understand why you condemn the entire the entire CBC on the basis on what one person says. I love the CBC, always have. Yes, there are those who turn me off, but the plusses far outweight the negatives for me, Arthur. I much prefer CBC to either CTV or Global, but even those networks occasionally have worthwhile programming. CBC is the network for David Suzuki, and the home of Melissa Fung and Adrienne Arsenault - some of the finest names in network news and documentaries - period.


NDPP
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Joined: Dec 28 2008

Taliban Steve and the Robot Nation - by Michael Harris

http://www.ipolitics.ca/2012/07/18/michael-harris-taliban-steve-and-the-...

"Stephen Harper has a bad case of MOUS - master of the universe syndrome..."

and the Canadian people a bad case of robot syndrome..


Brachina
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Joined: Feb 15 2012
Boom Boom wrote:

I don't understand why you condemn the entire the entire CBC on the basis on what one person says. I love the CBC, always have. Yes, there are those who turn me off, but the plusses far outweight the negatives for me, Arthur. I much prefer CBC to either CTV or Global, but even those networks occasionally have worthwhile programming. CBC is the network for David Suzuki, and the home of Melissa Fung and Adrienne Arsenault - some of the finest names in network news and documentaries - period.

I for one prefer netflix to all three of them. TV stations are the past, Netflix and hulu and others along with youtube are the future.

autoworker
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Joined: Dec 21 2008

When Buzz Hargrove gave Paul Martin a union jacket, the gesture was as tainted as the Liberal brand itself-- and that perception lingers. When union leaders actively identify with the corporate establishment as a peer group, the movement becomes a sham. Labour leaders hobnobbing with the establishment may be good for business, but it only serves to remind the rank and file that they're less than chattels in the grand scheme of politics.


Sean in Ottawa
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Joined: Jun 3 2003

I wish I could speak freely on this...


Unionist
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Joined: Dec 11 2005

Left Turn wrote:

When are we going to see a fightback against the Conservative government's budget cuts, most importantly the latest cuts to Employment Insurance?

40% of seasonal EI recipients are in Québec, 27% in the Maritimes. After the mass protests, this:

Québec demands that Ottawa suspend its EI reform

Here's an English-language story on the same topic.

 


autoworker
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Joined: Dec 21 2008
Unionist wrote:

Left Turn wrote:

When are we going to see a fightback against the Conservative government's budget cuts, most importantly the latest cuts to Employment Insurance?

40% of seasonal EI recipients are in Québec, 27% in the Maritimes. After the mass protests, this:

Québec demands that Ottawa suspend its EI reform

Here's an English-language story on the same topic.

 

Idle Once More?

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