ONDP convention next weekend in Hamilton

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Life, the unive...

M. Spector wrote:

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

You must have missed the Harris years when all kinds of unionized workers, including public sector ones, voted for Harris.

No, I didn't miss the Harris years. That was the blowback after Bob Rae had attacked public sector wages with "Rae Days".

I don't know how you imagine the public sector unionized workers of Ontario are going to reward the ONDP for voting to freeze their wages. No doubt you'll be surprised when Conservative signs appear on the lawns of public sector workers next election time. And you will curse them for being so ignorant as to turn their back on the NDP!

Again you just make shit up that people didn't say and then harangue them for it.  You are a mockery of a progressive voice.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

No, I'm a mockery of you, which is altogether a different thing.

Skinny Dipper

I hope we can keep things civil.

I will just add to my recent comment that I believe that voters are general selfish.  That is, voters think of their own interests first.  Then, they think of general interests.  Federally, the Harper Conservatives exploit voters' needs very well.

When I go to vote (or not vote), I generally look for a party that meets my personal needs on issues like taxation and services that will help me.  For example, provincially and municipally, I don't mind being taxed extra if the extra money will go to improving public transit because I do use it.  If I feel that I am doing well economically and socially, then I will consider higher needs such as the environment and health care for others.  I will also consider issues that help the poor and international political affairs.  However, if I am personally hurting economically (which I had been at one point in my life), I am going to consider the party that will help me with my immediate needs.  I won't give a damn about Israeli-Palestinian relations.  I won't give a damn about the general environment.

How do selfish voters affect the ONDP?  If one is a unionized public employee, chances are that one is making a reasonable amount of money, although a wage freeze could put some people into the low unreasonable category.  One could be paying a mortgage.  A pay freeze could affect mortgage payments.  It could mean that your child may not get to join a community club because of the costs.  Since the ONDP won't be able to differentiate from the other parties based on their de-facto stance on public pay freezes, it will need to offer other incentives.  However, the Ontario Conservatives could offer the same voter incentives such as a slight income tax reduction and a provincial tax credit for children's participation in community activities.  What will the ONDP offer to those same public service employee voters?

Doug

M. Spector wrote:

actually raising taxes on the rich is something that's completely off your radar. You'd construct dichotomies like EITHER wage freeze OR layoffs, without ever giving consideration to anything other than making the workers pay for the financial problems caused by the rich. 

900,000 salaries also represents 900,000 votes from unionized workers. Where you get the idea that freezing their salaries is a popular idea is a mystery to me.

 

The tax increase Andrea Horwath has put on the table raises in the neighbourhood of $300 to $500 million, depending on how effectively wealthy people can rearrange their affairs to avoid it. In her plan, that mostly goes to the HST exemption for home heating and so, at least if that exemption happens, isn't available for salary increases. Maybe the NDP could ask for more but that starts to become a dangerous game for the Liberals. They were rather lucky last election, having union money supporting them and an absence of corporate money against them so far as the purchase of issues advertising went. It's likely that the Working Families Coalition won't be so enthusiastic in its support of the Ontario Liberals next time and if the business community is pissed off with one too many tax increases that money will come into play in favour of the Tories. "The NDP made us do it" is an excuse that only goes so far and as you can see, the Liberals have a big incentive to say no to tax increases even if that causes another election now.  If a tax is raised to cover a salary increase rather than something of more general benefit, there's good reason to think the public won't react well. It's a political environment where much of the public thinks government staff are overpaid - with the media making much every year of the Sunshine List. Gain some votes from public workers, lose more from private workers.

Unionist

Skinny Dipper wrote:
It's much more than just freezes.  It's the loss of unionized members the right to negotiate a fair contract.  The government will impose a contract.  Unionized members will be denied the right to strike.

Is this factual? If so, how can the ONDP possibly support that? They can support a mandate to government negotiators for a 0% increase if they so decide - but imposing that if it can't be freely negotiated!?

How is that different from Lisa Raitt and Stephen Harper - or Bob Rae's previous government?

I just need clear confirmation that SD's statement is factual. If so, how can Doug and others be arguing about whether there's money or where it will come from? The issue is about destroying the workers' right to free collective bargaining. If Horwath supports this, let her be damned to hell - a proud successor and follower of the previous successful leader of the ONDP, Bob Rae.

Fidel

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

Again you just make shit up that people didn't say and then harangue them for it.  You are a mockery of a progressive voice.

They voted Harris and instead of just a few Rae days off, 10, 000 nurses were given pink slips. And we are still paying for Harris' $35 billion dollar tax cut to rich friends of the party.

Yeah unionized workers showed the NDP where to get off, for sure. Three decades three recessions.

And they think all this ideology is fixable inside one single four-year term in power. It's weak apologism for the neoliberal agenda. We are supposed to believe that neoliberalism has not damaged Canada the way it has. They want Walt Disney or Jesus Christ not the NDP.

And now they are demanding Pinocchio McGuinty style election promises from the NDP and to be lied to their faces. And if that isn't on, then they quietly suggest what amounts to going right along with the two old parties guaranteeing even more of the same, as if that will fix things.

It's busted, Jim. 35 year's worth of ideology down the drain.

Unionist

Fidel - is Horwath considering support for a measure removing public service workers' constitutional right to free collective bargaining? If you don't know, I forgive you, because I don't either. If she is, then she and anyone who makes pathetic transparent excuses for her should be damned to hell.

It doesn't take two four-year terms in office to remember that you're not supposed to crush workers' democratic rights to bargain and to strike. Bob Rae's ass was kicked and turfed long before then, and may he rot in hell for his betrayal.

Would someone kindly clarify this issue, if possible? If this is true, what other debate about trivial amounts of money would progressive people be engaging in?

 

Fidel

Let's blame the NDP for the right's broken-down ideology. It's guaranteed to work wonders.

Unionist wrote:
If Horwath supports this, let her be damned to hell - a proud successor and follower of the previous successful leader of the ONDP, Bob Rae.

Txlation: 

I've been seeing doctors Quackenbleu and Pinocchio for this gangrenous foot since forever. And Bob Rae couldn't cure me of my gangrene in just one term in office, and so therefore why should I switch from doctors Quackenbleu and Pinocchio to Dr. Horwath?

It makes no sense whatsoever. At some point they'll have to amputate you from the neck up.

Unionist

I'm sorry, Fidel, that you consider my question of clarification to be so irrelevant that you just go back to your usual mantra.

Ontario is a laughing stock today? I don't think so. I know there's an opposition. Unfortunately, it's not in any of your useless lying political parties. Doesn't mean we won't win. Just means it'll take a little longer.

 

Fidel

Regardless of that party with no future he now leads, Rae's NDP was actually the best government we'd ever had in neoliberal Ontario. 

Ontario is a laughing stock today. Half a million manufacturing jobs lost in Canada over the last ten years. And Pinocchio's dropped us all down a bottlomless debt hole like no other government in Ontario's history, and he h as zilch to show for it only a few rich friends of the party handed so many green energy monopolies subsidized by taxpayers. 

If you want more of that, then just say so. No need to wax and wane about what happend during a neoliberal meltdown across Canada 21 years ago when the NDP accidentally slipped past the phony-majority machine in Ontario.

Fidel

Just remember it's ideologically-induced decay and rot we have and not merely a case of the sniffles. At some point Pinocchio'ss nose will have to be amputated before it reaches his brain if it hasn't already happened.

Doug

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

And here is why the NDP will never get enough seats to win government.  This snotty, urban, thick as fuck ignorance of rural people and rural Ontario is at the core of a lot of NDP problems.  The NDP keeps putting up these great rural candidates and then cutting them off at the knees.  If you can't win at least a few seats in rural Ontario you will never win a majority government, especially if you are trying to knock off incumbents to get to government.

 

ETA  And if this profound ignorance of who opposes mega-scale industrial wind projects is typical of the Toronto-centred NDP people no wonder their outreach and communication suck so badly.   This is a big issue in rural Ontario and they can't even get the damn players right.  For the record is is mostly the well off, absentee landowner who is fine and dandy putting up turbines by other peoples homes, not their own.  And if you think the only problem is sightlines you should come spend a few damn minutes living in the middle of these god forsaken things.

 

After having grown up with the constant roar of Highway 401 in the background I have trouble getting excited about a wind turbine. I do feel the province should create a better legal standard for noise and enforce it well, but what is the practical alternative? Carbon emissions must go down and to do that we have to take advantage of the free energy available. We need gigawatt quantities of it. Cities need to be generating more of their own power too. So there's now more than ten different companies selling solar systems to Toronto residents. We could be doing better on wind power but - surprise, surprise - proposed turbines fully two kilometers into Lake Ontario have been blocked courtesy of wealthy homeowners on the lakeshore who feared for their property values. On the other hand, geothermal heating systems are selling like crazy. New buildings of over a certain size are going to require roofs that either support plants and add to the building's insulation or which generate renewable energy.

Doug

Unionist wrote:

I just need clear confirmation that SD's statement is factual. If so, how can Doug and others be arguing about whether there's money or where it will come from? The issue is about destroying the workers' right to free collective bargaining. If Horwath supports this, let her be damned to hell - a proud successor and follower of the previous successful leader of the ONDP, Bob Rae.

 

Strictly speaking, no, the NDP won't be supporting that because it's not going to be part of the budget legislation. It'll be in its own bill that won't cause the government to suffer a loss of confidence if it's defeated. I suspect the Liberals will be hoping the Tories help them out on that one. Previous attempts by the Liberals to negotiate a wage freeze - essentially by strongly suggesting to public employers like school board and hospitals that they negotiate one - failed miserably. An approach that didn't violate collective bargaining would probably have to involve some sort of temporary centralized bargaining process for the whole public sector with the government negotiators making it clear that unions have a choice between a salary increase and X thousand layoffs. Uuuuuuugly! It might be more voluntary than the Social Contract but I bet it would look an awful lot like it.

 

Unless the Ontario economic picture starts to look better than projected or there is public willingness to accept a large general tax increase raising billions, things remain that icky for everyone involved.

Doug
Lord Palmerston

The tax increase on the $500K is a positive step, but most of that revenue is scuttled away by the HST cut.  Then there's all this stupid "reward the job creators" crap.  And $500K is far too high to start in terms of taxing high income earners.  This doesn't even hit the 1%.

It should start at $100K at most.  And for those who protest that "$100,000 isn't all that much", keep in mind that 95% of Canadians earn less than that. 

There's a group of Ontario doctors saying "tax us!"  But Horwath won't.

Perhaps this is a moot point though, as I'm pretty sure the ONDP is going back this austerity budget.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Doug wrote:

Strictly speaking, no, the NDP won't be supporting that because it's not going to be part of the budget legislation. It'll be in its own bill that won't cause the government to suffer a loss of confidence if it's defeated.

The budget specifically refrains from allocating any money for public sector salary increases in upcoming negotiations, and McGuilty says if the unions won't accept 0% at the bargaining table, they will pass legislation forcing them to accept a wage freeze. That legislation will of course have Conservative support and will pass.

It would be the height of hypocrisy for the NDP to vote for this budget and a 0% increase and then mount a token vote against the enforcing legislation later on when it's too late, since they are already well aware that the only chance to stop a wage freeze is to amend or defeat the budget itself. Once they pass the budget, they seal the fate of the public service workers.

Howard

Doak sounds like a spoiled brat. Laughing

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Lord Palmerston wrote:

The tax increase on the $500K is a positive step, but most of that revenue is scuttled away by the HST cut.Then there's all this stupid "reward the job creators" crap.  And $500K is far too high to start in terms of taxing high income earners.  This doesn't even hit the 1%.

It's an extremely modest tax proposal.

According to the Toronto Star, the provincial income tax rate on the portion of income between $78,000 and $500,000 would remain at 11.16%, but rise to 13.16% on the portion of income above $500,000. A person with an income of half a million a year would see no change in their tax rate. A person with taxable income of $600,000 would pay an extra 2% on the $100,000 that exceeds the half-million — i.e., an extra $2,000 (a third of a percent of their taxable income).

We're talking about a class of people here who own vast amounts of wealth, quite apart from their "income", and have the wherewithal to structure their income for maximum tax advantage. Their accumulated wealth doesn't even come, for the most part, from their fantastic salaries, which are often only a small fraction of their annual incomes. Typically, the bulk of their income comes not as salary but as dividends and capital gains, which get favourable tax treatment as compared with salary income. They also can take full advantage of tax shelters, RRSP's, TFSA's, and many other income-deferral, tax-deferral, and income-splitting arrangements - all completely legal. Some of these people pay less income tax than their secretaries do.

Lord Palmerston

Yup.  

Stockholm

I think that to get more substantial tax reform, you need to start by opening the door a crack a creating some precedent for increasing taxes. Just raising taxes in income above $500,000/year could be a good Trojan horse for more increases down the road.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

I wasn't aware that tax increases were all that unprecedented. [img]http://i32.tinypic.com/oi5aw2.jpg[/img]

Doug

There haven't been any general-purpose increases in almost 20 years.

janfromthebruce

Doug wrote:

I oppose it on its own. If it's not paired with a tax exemption for measures to improve home energy efficiency - it gets tricky to define what should be included - it creates an incentive to go on wasting energy. Since the main concern is the impact on low-income people, that's who should receive a tax credit. As for wind energy we're kind of going to need that (and solar too!) on an industrial scale if it's going to displace carbon-emitting coal and gas generation, nevermind what happens if electric vehicles become popular.  The anti-wind people really do come across as rich people with country houses who are outraged that their view's been spoiled by their neighbour's windmills (nobody's forcing people to put them on their land). I don't suppose they want a conventional generating station or a nuclear station in their area either.

Hi Doug, you may not know this but industrial wind turbines need to be backed up with "fracked natural gas" because their energy production is intermittent and we don't have the capacity to store this energy. Since we need a steady and stable supple of energy (think black and brown outs), natural gas and it's fracking consequences to our water and health will be necessary.

I will in Bruce County and and live near a nuclear generating station, and live in the heartland of industrial wind turbines. As said already, the view of them on the horizon is not the problem. For me, it is about green washing and who reaps the reward - corporations and particulary oil corporations rather than actual communities, who have lost any right to suggest where they go.

 

Doug

No need to do that at all. You can pair wind power with hydroelectric power for that purpose. When there's a surplus of power water gets pumped uphill, when power is needed more water is allowed to flow through the generators. There's been an advance in battery technology to allow for storage of sizeable amounts of power too. You can see a talk on it here. Let local communities decide where turbines will go they are liable to decide that they will go nowhere, which is why the Green Energy Act removed that power. That probably isn't the best approach but something did have to be done to facilitate the adoption of renewable energy across the province.

Life, the unive...

Uh, battery storage on the scale you are talking about is NOT available or just over the horizon, nor is there enough water re-pump available to meet peak demands.  I really wish people would look at the reality of our energy grid and not the pipe dream.  Two facts from the government's green-wash energy plans.  If you are an individual producer of renewable energy, as I am, you can not store that energy and sell it back to the grid.  You are on or off, no inbetween.  Ontario is moving forward on fracking and gas paired energy for quick up and down loss from renewables (a reality)  Only gas and coal plants at this stage could provide enough power and the ability to get more hydro-electrical power through environmental assessments is pretty long term, if ever.  There is a reason the govenment had so many plans for new gas plants.

As for communites getting to decide why should rural Ontario put up with all this stuff so you can Younge and Dundas lit up like a Christmas tree all night, everynight.   If you look at a wind map of Ontario one of the best spots in the province is the Lake Ontario shoreline, not out in the lake, but the shoreline.  When I see them lining the shoreline I believe it is isn't out of sight out of mind.  Meanwhile solar is getting sqeezed out.  Did you know for instance that if, say Wal Mart is building a new building and wants to put solar panels on the roof they will get the more lucrative rooftop solar rate.  Wheras a farmer building a new barn is only allowed the ground mount solar rate.  One more instance that the green in the Green Energy Act is really about green for the corporate friends of this government.

janfromthebruce

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

Uh, battery storage on the scale you are talking about is NOT available or just over the horizon, nor is there enough water re-pump available to meet peak demands.  I really wish people would look at the reality of our energy grid and not the pipe dream.  Two facts from the government's green-wash energy plans.  If you are an individual producer of renewable energy, as I am, you can not store that energy and sell it back to the grid.  You are on or off, no inbetween.  Ontario is moving forward on fracking and gas paired energy for quick up and down loss from renewables (a reality)  Only gas and coal plants at this stage could provide enough power and the ability to get more hydro-electrical power through environmental assessments is pretty long term, if ever.  There is a reason the govenment had so many plans for new gas plants.

As for communites getting to decide why should rural Ontario put up with all this stuff so you can Younge and Dundas lit up like a Christmas tree all night, everynight.   If you look at a wind map of Ontario one of the best spots in the province is the Lake Ontario shoreline, not out in the lake, but the shoreline.  When I see them lining the shoreline I believe it is isn't out of sight out of mind.  Meanwhile solar is getting sqeezed out.  Did you know for instance that if, say Wal Mart is building a new building and wants to put solar panels on the roof they will get the more lucrative rooftop solar rate.  Wheras a farmer building a new barn is only allowed the ground mount solar rate.  One more instance that the green in the Green Energy Act is really about green for the corporate friends of this government.

plus 100 in agreement.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

I'd like to bring this thread back on topic to the provincial NDP convention, which ended on April 15. Nobody who was there has posted on it since it ended. So what happened?

Here's what the MSM are saying:

Martin Regg Cohn, Toronto Star, wrote:

When Andrea Horwath speaks, New Democrats listen. They also talk back. That's the tradition for any NDP leader at party conventions, and this weekend in Hamilton was no exception. As Horwath talked about tax incentives for corporations, a delegate shouted out: "They don't have hearts!"

As the crowd roared, Horwath could have gone along with the conventional anti-business sentiment on the convention floor. Instead, she looked away from her teleprompter and ad-libbed with a jibe of her own: "We need to work with business - the ones with hearts - to create jobs," she said pointedly.

It was a telling moment in her weekend-long struggle for the hearts and minds of party delegates. Behind the scenes, Horwath and her team have been working hard to change the party's traditional mindset.

It's not easy departing from the script at an NDP convention. The lines are laid out long in advance - by all sides. Before she spoke, labour leaders exhorted delegates to take a harder line against any wage freezes. After her speech, a call went out for the Socialist Caucus to convene....

For her part, Horwath is doing everything she can to resist a tight embrace from her union brothers. Keen to avoid the trap being set by the Liberals, she omitted any reference to fighting a wage freeze in her keynote speech, and also from her laundry list of budget demands.

If the Liberals are proffering a poison pill, Horwath isn't biting. While paying lip service to collective bargaining rights, the New Democrats have quietly aligned themselves with the Liberals' deficit-reduction timetable. The unavoidable implication is that if the NDP were in power, they too would have to budget for a pay freeze - or Rae Days redux.

Horwath is trying hard to change the public face of the NDP. Her team backed the candidacy of Tamil-Canadian Neethan Shan as party president against union stalwart Andrew Mackenzie. Shan's victory signalled a shift in the dynamic of NDP conventions, traditionally choreographed by union leaders, in favour of ethnic diversity.

In her convention speech, Horwath said the party must change with the times to position itself for power. And it must draw on the tradition of fiscal prudence by prairie New Democrats who delivered balanced budgets in office. "New Democrats have shown the world they can tackle deficits," she lectured delegates, who responded with lukewarm applause.

Adam Radwanski, Globe and Mail, wrote:

The odds are that within the next 10 days, Ms. Horwath will announce she'll support a decidedly right-of-centre budget, in return for a few tweaks made by the governing Liberals. So her half-hour speech was squarely aimed at justifying her pragmatism to an audience she knows is skeptical about it. It was a well-constructed text, building a case that it's better to try to build a fairer province by working with other parties than to take "the path of easy, simple opposition to everything." But the response was more polite than enthusiastic, with even party officials conceding a degree of unease in the air....

To some extent, the tension can be chalked up to backlash from the likes of Sid Ryan, the outspoken Ontario Federation of Labour president who spent the weekend pushing for the NDP to take a much harder line in interparty negotiations. But watching the grassroots at their policy sessions, earnestly debating a thick package of resolutions calling for everything from free tuition to nationalization of steel companies to an end to standardized testing in elementary schools, it was obvious the disconnect goes beyond a few agitators.

Since her leadership win three years ago, Ms. Horwath has been trying to convert the NDP from a party of conscience to one that regularly competes for government. That's meant a willingness to offer what she thinks the public wants to hear, rather than what she thinks it should hear. Federally, Jack Layton engineered a similar culture change. But Ms. Horwath has been blunter about it, leading to a campaign platform last fall that was so heavy on pocketbook populism, it overlapped heavily with the one Mr. Hudak ran on. Now, the results that election produced are causing the shift to be rammed down New Democrats' throats.

It's not just that Ms. Horwath is willing to bargain with the Liberals; it's what she's bargaining for. The closest she comes to traditional NDP doctrine is calling for a surtax on people making more than $500,000 per year. But other big asks - an HST break on home heating, a tax-credit for companies that create jobs, caps on the pay of public-sector executives - are more populist than left-wing. And the social-spending requests, for top-ups to disability payments and child-care funding, are so modest as to almost seem apologetic.

Meanwhile, Ms. Horwath is giving the Liberals a free pass on their emerging battle with organized labour, to the extent that she didn't utter a word about it this weekend. Presented with an opportunity to win back some of the union support that bled to the Liberals after the mid-1990s, she's resolutely declining to do so for fear of playing to type.

Fidel

Come to think of it I haven't seen Radwanski's plan for socialism in one province after the Tory-Libs have so hopelessly bankrupted it, either. We can only assume that he doesn't have one.

North Star

I was there and there was huge disappointment from labour. Andrew Mackenize didn't win the Presidency and the party brass ran what amounted to a slate even running and getting Taras Natyshak elected as a VP and Michael Mantha elected as Northern rep. Mantha's election was particularly controversial as the previous rep who was going to run again had endorsed Mackenzie for president and then Mantha jumped in at the last minute. The pro-Andrea crowd blames Sid Ryan for everything. Of course Ryan can be divisive but it goes beyond that. He did offer up a conciliatory speech on Sunday though say MuGuinty was the main enemy and bringing out a worker from Electro-Motive. There is no one from the OFL on executive for the first time in the history of the party. While Neethan Shan is a step forward for the party that has been very white in the past, his presidency was compromised by the way it went down with the leader and the MPPs getting involved. There was even a provincial office employee running around gathering Shan supporters while wearing a headset. Such a blatant example of the party bureaucracy getting involved.

Not a good idea to piss off labour seeing as they co-sign the election loans and offer up lots of cash. It's not as if big business is quite ready to start supporting the ONDP even if they claim they are not your grandfather's NDP.

Wilf Day

North Star wrote:

Not a good idea to piss off labour seeing as they co-sign the election loans and offer up lots of cash. It's not as if big business is quite ready to start supporting the ONDP even if they claim they are not your grandfather's NDP.

Sid Ryan is not "labour." He's not even the OFL, although he may think he is. I have projected a breakdown on how many Nash real-time supporters followed him when he tried to bring them over to Topp on the second ballot; not many.

North Star wrote:

There is no one from the OFL on executive for the first time in the history of the party.

That sounds like a serious error, if you mean no one from labour; really?

North Star

OFL for sure. Richard Eberhardt who Mantha defeated for Northern Rep does have a labour background. He's the only one I think with any labour connection. Natyshak and Mantha have "labour" backgrounds too but of course they are there for other reasons.

aka Mycroft

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

Wasn't questioning the presence of a slate, or two, they exist in every political party and organization.  Nothing new there.  

I thought the executive voted to abolish slates at its pre-convention meeting.

Unionist

Fidel wrote:

Come to think of it I haven't seen Radwanski's plan for socialism in one province after the Tory-Libs have so hopelessly bankrupted it, either.

Ok, so only a rich province can dabble in socialism. A bankrupt province needs a few terms of capitalism to get off life support. Interesting thesis. Someone should let Alberta know.

 

Life, the unive...

aka Mycroft wrote:

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

Wasn't questioning the presence of a slate, or two, they exist in every political party and organization.  Nothing new there.  

I thought the executive voted to abolish slates at its pre-convention meeting.

I don't know about that, but like minded people will always come together to push their agenda, concerns, issues, what have you.  Has been ever thus in every organization.  Nothing particularly wrong with it as long as people are open about it I guess.

aka Mycroft

The apparent absence of high ranking labour reps from the executive is surprising considering the extent to which Horwath was the "labour candidate" in the leadership convention. She didn't have the exclusive support of labour but she certainly had the support of most of the labour leadership, particularly the OFL ie CUPE, Steel and OPSEU (and not only Wayne Sameulson and Irene Harris, then OFL President and Secretary-Treasurer but also Sid Ryan, then head of CUPE Ontario). 

aka Mycroft

double post

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

It seems clear the ONDP is prepared to leave organized labour to twist in the wind under the McGuinty/Hudak austerity program.

Is it time for a real labour party in Ontario?

Wilf Day

M. Spector wrote:

It seems clear the ONDP is prepared to leave organized labour to twist in the wind under the McGuinty/Hudak austerity program.

Very doubtful under Andrea. She has worked with the labour movement all her life: a degree in Labour Studies, followed by her first job with the Hamilton labour movement for several years, programming and providing literacy, numeracy and ESL training for workers. Then she worked in the Hamilton Community Legal Clinic system which is unofficially linked to labour, providing public legal education to groups working with tenants, injured workers and people with disabilities. She made her name as Co-chair of Hamilton's very successful 1996 Days of Action organized by the Labour Council and Hamilton unions, and rode that into a city council seat in 1997. She was very much the labour candidate in the 2009 leadership campaign; in Hamilton to say NDP is to say labour, since it is the most labour-dominated city in Ontario's NDP, and has been so ever since Walter Rollo became Minister of Labour in 1921 in the Farmer-Labour government. The first time David Lewis ran for Parliament in a general election in 1945 he chose Hamilton to run in. It's true Andrea has to show she is not just a puppet of the Steelworkers Union, but that certainly doesn't mean she has to morph into Bob Rae.

Grandpa_Bill

So, Radwanski wrote this in The Globe:  "The closest [Horwath] comes to traditional NDP doctrine is calling for a surtax on people making more than $500,000 per year. But other big asks - [including] . . . caps on the pay of public-sector executives - are more populist than left-wing."

Rubbish!  Different countries currently reduce income inequality using two methods:

  1. reduce differences in pay before tax through high income caps and low income minimums (Japan)
  2. increase taxes on high earners and redistribute the money through benefits to low earners (Sweden)

Calling one method left-wing and the other populist seems like nonsense to me.

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Blah, blah, blah!

If she's so fucking labour-friendly why didn't she even mention the public-service wage freeze at the convention?

She's so fucking terrified of the NDP being seen as labour-friendly that she'd rather hand hundreds of millions of dollars to fucking capitalist employers as a reward for giving people McJobs than raise a word of protest at making the public sector workers pay for the financial crisis of the rich.

Compared with Rae Days, this is at least as big a betrayal.

NDPP

I think Walkom's pretty much nailed it:

Walkom: 'Turncoat' Rae a Trailblazer for Horwath's Non-Labour NDP

http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1163151--walkom-turn...

"...For in reality, Horwath and her NDP are hewing closely to the path that Rae himself carved out two decades ago as Ontario's first and only NDP premier. Rae is still vilified as a turncoat by many New Democrats. But the Liberalization of the NDP that he once promoted - and that former federal NDP leader Jack Layton accelerated - is steaming ahead.

Under Horwath, the Ontario NDP has become more business-friendly. It wants tax breaks for firms that create jobs, tax breaks for consumers and, like both the Liberals and Conservatives, a balanced budget within six years. The NDP may be now calling for the super-rich to pay higher taxes. But it carefully avoided such leftish talk during last fall's election campaign.

More to the point, the party that was founded on partnership with organized labour no longer makes any pretence of being a labour party. Horwath's eloquent silence on Liberal plans to fight the deficit on the backs of unionized public sector workers has made that clear. She and her NDP have taken the position - which may be politically shrewd - that embracing fiscal austerity will win them more votes than supporting nurses, teachers and jail guards.

Where does that leave the NDP? It's certainly not socialist. And if it's not a labour party, then what is it? For a long time, New Democrats viewed themselves as the conscience of province and nation - like the Liberals but nicer. Now, increasingly, they want to become the Liberals.

Bob Rae would understand."

Freedom 55

Grandpa_Bill wrote:

So, Radwanski wrote this in The Globe:  "The closest [Horwath] comes to traditional NDP doctrine is calling for a surtax on people making more than $500,000 per year. But other big asks - [including] . . . caps on the pay of public-sector executives - are more populist than left-wing."

 

They both sound more populist than left-wing to me.

Freedom 55

M. Spector wrote:

Blah, blah, blah!

If she's so fucking labour-friendly why didn't she even mention the public-service wage freeze at the convention?

She's so fucking terrified of the NDP being seen as labour-friendly that she'd rather hand hundreds of millions of dollars to fucking capitalist employers as a reward for giving people McJobs than raise a word of protest at making the public sector workers pay for the financial crisis of the rich.

Compared with Rae Days, this is at least as big a betrayal.

 

Agreed. Chalk me up as unmoved by her labour credentials. Maybe she was a labour movement rock-star back then. I can't say... I didn't know her then. But people have been known to change when they enter politics. My opinion of her is based on what she's doing as party leader, and nothing I've seen so far gives me any hope for her, the party, or the province.

radiorahim radiorahim's picture

Dippers throwing public sector workers under the bus as they move closer to power is nothing new.

What really sets off my appall-o-meter is that during negotiations with McGuinty, the ONDP didn't even propose lifting the freeze on Ontario Works benefits. Not even Bob Rae was that bad.

Unionist

So when I [url=http://rabble.ca/babble/ontario/ondp-convention-next-weekend-hamilton#co... her to hell[/url], I was expressing a growing consensus?

That's really too bad.

And Wilf, I'm impressed by your background check on Andrea's labour credentials. But quite honestly, every fucking traitor I've ever encountered in the labour movement came from the labour movement. We workers prefer to judge people by where they stand rather than by where they came from. Too often, where they came from is where they left.

 

Life, the unive...

It is amazing how all of you can be so certain you know the outcome when NOTHING has happened yet.   You could be right, but you might just as easily be wrong.  No one knows at this point how things will play out.  A poll today shows a likely Hudak win, with the Liberals in 3rd.  That may just be what the NDP needs to get real changes, or to take the government down.  How be you save the histironics for when something actually happens.   

Freedom 55

Unionist wrote:

every fucking traitor I've ever encountered in the labour movement came from the labour movement. We workers prefer to judge people by where they stand rather than by where they came from. Too often, where they came from is where they left.

 

[img]http://peacepipe420.com/images/uploads/fbnlike.jpg[/img]

Freedom 55

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

How be you save the histironics for when something actually happens.

 

So... after the budget vote? No thanks. I'd rather speak out now, when all signs point to her supporting the budget in exchange for some very feeble and inadequate "demands". Maybe if enough people do we can save Andrea (and the rest of us) from herself before it's too late.

Life, the unive...

So the NDP is garnering increased support because they are doing the exact opposite of what you and others have been suggesting, perhaps creating ideal conditions to bring the Liberals down, and we are all suppose to think you are saving us from something.  Seems to me none of you have the slightest strategic sense to make such a grandiose claim of saving anyone.

janfromthebruce

radiorahim wrote:

Dippers throwing public sector workers under the bus as they move closer to power is nothing new.

What really sets off my appall-o-meter is that during negotiations with McGuinty, the ONDP didn't even propose lifting the freeze on Ontario Works benefits. Not even Bob Rae was that bad.

I would hope that Andrea and group strongly suggest that this small and very vulnerable group of Ontarians should not help pay for the high rollers/banker's debt in Ontario.

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