ONDP: Can Balance a Budget in Heels!

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Cueball Cueball's picture

mahmud wrote:

Fidel wrote:

Cueball, I'm sincerely sorry for offending your Afghan holy ol' anticommunist jihadi warriors and right wing misogynists in the extreme, the mooj. I feel really badly now.

Fidel,

Mujahid (pl. mujahideen) means combatant, militant, fighter, in arabic. Has nothing to do with right wing or left wing. This mooj word is a racial slur used to denigrate, dehumanize  Arab/Muslim militants.

Keep using it, It is your right to freedom of expression! And since you seem keen and determined, you may as well alternate it with "ragheads", "camel jockeys", "sand niggers" and I am sure those who fed you the word "mooj" would be happy to suply you with even more...

Yes. However, I have reconsidered my previous comparisons and I think a better comparison would be something like "Jap", for Japanese, or Ruskie. Moreover, such slang has to be considered in the manner in which it is used, and even if it is a short form pejorative term, its usage has morphed it into a straight up racist dehumanizing slur, like "Pali" for Palestinian.

aka Mycroft

I don't find the ads particularly sexist, it's the economic conservatism and failure to offer anything even remotely progressive that bothers me. Even the environmentalist ad mocks environmentalists and tries to say the NDP is green but not too green.

Why can't Andrea create jobs in a hard hat and high heels or give all workers an extra week of vacation while wearing lipstick?

Sunday Hat
Sunday Hat

aka Mycroft wrote:
Why can't Andrea create jobs in a hard hat and high heels or give all workers an extra week of vacation while wearing lipstick?
Much as I think you're over-reacting, I think that would be hardcore awesome.

Kloch

Sunday Hat wrote:

Kloch wrote:
But I digress, the more pertinent question is: How is using right-wing sloganeering empowering to women?  The whole campaign is utilizes campaign slogans that are directly understood as code words for attacks on government services through tax cuts.  If you find that empowering, then I guess you find Margaret Thatcher or Kim Campbell empowering.

Right-wing sloganeering? Did I miss something?

I'd rather not re-state that these are posters and the NDP policies are still pretty far on the left-wing of debate (cancelling corporate tax cuts, the government's wage freeze, halting nuclear expansion, etc,)

But, seriously, are people really grumbling, "Business IS a four letter word" "I don't ever want a balanced budget"? I mean... are New Democrats really as far into cloud cuckooland as their right-wing critics claim they are?

I don't want to alarm any bleeding socialist pursists but most socialist governments balance budgets and work with business. I'm not just talking NDP governments I'm talking Hugo Chavez and Evo Morales.

Well, actually, running balanced budgets in a recession is potentially a bad idea.  In fact, it is an idea that actually caused serious harm during the great depression and, ultimately doomed Herbert Hoover's Presidency. 

Furthermore, the balancing budgets discussion is happening in the context of using public money to bail out banks and big business, and then having the rest of us pay the tab by reductions in government services.  Rather than run on the idea that the purpose of government should be to protect the collective good, or to protect the least fortunate in society, the NDP is attempting to pander to a phony populist sentiment.

What you are defending is not only economically stupid, but will also likely drive voters to the Conservative party.  For all the good they are doing, they may as well be handing out Tim Hudak's literature.

Kloch
Cueball Cueball's picture

Sunday Hat wrote:

Kloch wrote:
But I digress, the more pertinent question is: How is using right-wing sloganeering empowering to women?  The whole campaign is utilizes campaign slogans that are directly understood as code words for attacks on government services through tax cuts.  If you find that empowering, then I guess you find Margaret Thatcher or Kim Campbell empowering.

Right-wing sloganeering? Did I miss something?

What it means to be "left".

aka Mycroft

That's odd, I could have sworn that Morales was elected on a radical program of eliminating poverty. I didn't realise his main campaign plank was balancing the budget.

No one is saying the NDP shouldn't promise to balance the budget, just that that shouldn't be their core promise. An NDP that runs on an anti-tax, balanced budget, anti "tax and spend" platform might as well be telling people to vote Tory. The NDP didn't almost win in 1975 by promising a balanced budget and tax cuts, they did it by running on rent control and workers health and safety and did so well they forced even the Tory party to move left. In 1990, they didn't win by promising to not spend and to balance the budget, they won on the Agenda for People tha promised public auto insurance.

What actual social gain will the NDP run on in 2010?

Scott Piatkowski Scott Piatkowski's picture

Wow, people here sure know how to get excited over a few posters.

There was no backlash at Council. Not one person mentioned them at the microphone and no one complained about them to me (and, trust me, if people have a complaint, they feel free to tell me).

Andrea received several standing ovations. And, her speech was filled with lots of language that would make the people who are complaining about the posters feel all warm inside.

 

Unionist

I like Andrea, Scott. It's the posters which we're talking about here. They are offensive and pandering.

No one complained about them to you. Did you have an opinion about them? They're the topic of this thread.

aka Mycroft

You mean the posters were real and a nefarious person didn't glue slogans onto them just to embarrass the party?

I guess JimWaterloo must have been suffering from hysterical blindness. His eyes, so dismayed by what they were seeing that they just refused to send the message to his brain.

wage zombie

Sunday Hat wrote:

But, seriously, are people really grumbling, "Business IS a four letter word" "I don't ever want a balanced budget"? I mean... are New Democrats really as far into cloud cuckooland as their right-wing critics claim they are?

It's repeating right wing messaging.  It's weak and defensive, rather than proactive.  The central point of an NDP campaign should never be "don't believe what they say about us."

If balanced budgets are the best the NDP can offer then why bother?

Fidel

mahmud wrote:

Fidel wrote:

Cueball, I'm sincerely sorry for offending your Afghan holy ol' anticommunist jihadi warriors and right wing misogynists in the extreme, the mooj. I feel really badly now.

Fidel,

Mujahid (pl. mujahideen) means combatant, militant, fighter, in arabic. Has nothing to do with right wing or left wing. This mooj word is a racial slur used to denigrate, dehumanize  Arab/Muslim militants.

Sorry but you're barking up the wrong tree with me. I don't believe in fairy tales about holy warriors on the side of Allah. The only interests they fought for were their own. In the 1960s and 70s, there were dozens of left wing secular political parties in Afghanistan and far outnumbered any right wing theocratic feudal warlord movements. The CIA and US taxpayers along with the Saudis and ISI propped up the the most vicious of war lords and drug barons in Afghanistan at the time. Afghans themselves were not given a choice in the matter.

The "Afghan Arabs" of the late 1970s and 1980s were anything but neutral "freedom fighters." The CIA’s Milton Beardman said that they didn't train Arabs. But according to Abdel Monam Saidali, of Centre for Strategic Studies in Cairo, Osama bin Laden and the "Afghan Arabs" were provided specialized training, "with very sophisticated types of training that was allowed to them by the CIA". (National Public Radio, 16 August 1998).

Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, al-CIA'duh's hijacking specialist Ali "Amriki" Mohamed, Khalid Sheikh Mohammed etc etc were ALL trained by the Americanos to fight the communists in Afghanistan which makes them anticommunist jihadis who fought for Uncle Sam whether they admit to it under torture at Gitmo or not. There is no such thing as "al-Qaeda" or even Elvis bin Laden.

Scott Piatkowski Scott Piatkowski's picture

Unionist wrote:
I like Andrea, Scott. It's the posters which we're talking about here. They are offensive and pandering.

No one complained about them to you. Did you have an opinion about them? They're the topic of this thread.

 

When I saw them, I thought, "Cheeky, but I'm sure that someone is going to complain about them."

But, so what? They're posters, not policy.

I'm aware of the topic of the thread. I was responding to the babbler who talked about the huge backlash that the posters allegedly generated at Council.

Cueball Cueball's picture

The only people who seem to be excised about this are those that object to criticism.

For example, aside from the neo-liberal small "c" conservative messaging, what we have here is some very strong images here of a woman in "power" mode. Those are great. I'd keep them. That said, kneecapping that image by trivializing it by making an issue of her clothes fits right in with the "not only is she a business woman, but she can cook a mean ratatouille as well", trope common to magazines like Chatelaine.

No. Sorry. No one ever thought of putting out Howard Hampton ads that focused on his "sex" as an attribute, or made e point about talking about his tie.

The message is that Andrea and the NDP are not serious. And indeed it appears that they are not. We are talking about running a province, not going to a cocktail party.

aka Mycroft

Scott, I was just responding to Fidel's claim that we'll never see the poster again (and therefore should pretend they never existed) and to a rumour that they had been removed due to complaints. If they didn't cause a stir and are a harbinger of the party's messaging next year than all the worse.

Sunday Hat

Kloch, you're missing the point but I suspect you make a point of missing the point. So I'll just restate Evo Morales sees it as the responsibility of a good socialist to balance budgets. Please read the quote and comment on it.

AKA Mycroft, Morales was elected on a multi-pronged platform and one of the things he's made a prirority is not shifting into debt because massive debt means loss of national autonomy. I never claimed this was his only commitment, I was merely countering the idiotic argument that balancing budgets is a "right wing" idea. Bad enough get this crap from our right-wing opponents.

Besides ridiculous discussion boards like this one (where the debate seems to on a cul de sac far removed from reality) the NDP under Horwath is mostly characterized by fights for control over mineral development, solidarity with First Nations, ensuring "buy local" policies for infrastructure projects, opposing the creeping privatization of our electricity and health systems, opposing nuclear power, nationalizing pensions, banning scab labour and fighting a fairly massive tax shift from business to consumers. Ironically, none of this is much out of step with what Morales has focussed on in Bolivia.

I remember when Lula swapped his overalls for a suit in 2002 the Brazilian Left was mature enough to realize that that wasn't the important thing.

wage zombie

Sunday Hat wrote:

Besides ridiculous discussion boards like this one (where the debate seems to on a cul de sac far removed from reality) the NDP under Horwath is mostly characterized by fights for control over mineral development, solidarity with First Nations, ensuring "buy local" policies for infrastructure projects, opposing the creeping privatization of our electricity and health systems, opposing nuclear power, nationalizing pensions, banning scab labour and fighting a fairly massive tax shift from business to consumers.

I'd love to see posters about that stuff.

Sunday Hat

Stopping scab labour. In heels.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

The claim that the mock-up ads indicate an ONDP plan to run to the right demonstrates why so few babblers would make effective political communicators.

For electoral success, virtually all politicians have to innoculate themselves against one or another political weakness / vulnerability.  For Count Ignatieff, it's his capacity to connect with regular folk.  For Harper it was and is the perception of the extremist agenda.  For New Democrats generally, it's the accusation (not borne out by actual facts, mind you) that the NDP can't manage a budget.

Pre-election periods are a good time to do innoculation work.  The execution aside (and the arguable sexism), the messaging of these ads would be good for New Democrats in a pre-election period.

As to the arguable sexism - and especially the "heels" reference, female candidates and female leaders have a tightrope to walk that men generally don't.  It isn't right, but that doesn't mean it isn't true.  If a woman is overtly feminine, she's "not tough enough."  If she's overtly hardnosed, she's "not woman enough."  I think the ads are a (not very well thought out) attempt to square that circle.

That said, a female candidate can survive "not woman enough" better than she can survive "not tough enough."  Witness Mrs. Thatcher, who was routinely depicted in Spitting Image as very mannish - even once using the urinal.

Fidel

Tommy Douglas and the CCF balanced a string of budgets. It's the way they did things back then, too.

If the Liberals want to be fiscal Frankensteins like the Harris neoliberals before them, then they should quit now, like Gordon Campbell knows when it's time to throw in the towel. Goodbye Dalton, we hardly knew ya.

 

Aristotleded24

Malcolm wrote:
For electoral success, virtually all politicians have to innoculate themselves against one or another political weakness / vulnerability.  For Count Ignatieff, it's his capacity to connect with regular folk.  For Harper it was and is the perception of the extremist agenda.  For New Democrats generally, it's the accusation (not borne out by actual facts, mind you) that the NDP can't manage a budget.

I don't think that works. All you have to do is look up a general news article about the government in Manitoba and people are commenting all over the place about how the NDP is draining the provincial finances. This after several verifiable balanced budgets and an innoculation campaign like you're describing. Same with crime, the NDP is constantly blamed for the fact that Manitoba is near the top in this category, despite having adopted nearly evey tough-on-crime idea that the PCs have come up with.

I think you should just focus on your strengths. I remember seeing an interview with Harper questioning him about environmental policy, and he shrugged off the question by saying that environmentalists will never vote Conservative anyways. The NDP needs to shrug off its critics in a similar process. I'm worried that the posters here play into critics hands. Plus, does anybody really think that someone is going to look at the poster and think, "you know, I always thought those NDPers couldn't balance a budget, but wow, that poster really changed my mind."

Fidel

Yes, and I find that most Liberal Party supporters are under the illusion that their party is fiscally responsible. The truth is that their party is the least fiscally responsible according to the historical record.

Perhaps fewer people would vote Liberal still if they knew just how overspending and under-achieving that party really is when in power.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

Closing for length. If any future threads on these unfortunate posters could start from a more sensible and engaged place--as well as avoiding digressive forays into Afghanistan--that would be grand.

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