Alberta Liberal Party leadership

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Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

Of course there are Liberals who have shifted their vote to the NDP.  No one can deny that.  But if we followed the perscription you did in Calgary, my MP would be Debbie Carlson, a very right wing Liberal. 

Instead, we held to our guns, worked under the NDP lable, and got an MP that reflects my views (and the views of the community) much more closely.

Noise

 Lou:

Quote:
Carlson was a provincial MLA at the time and won a contested nomination.  The NDP nomination was uncontested.  I doubt she could win a nomination today, but then...

Most of our nominations end up uncontested...  I did assume the same with the NDP too.  For me, this becomes the biggest part in the question of feasibility.  In a new party, would the left presence be enough to prevent the nomination of right wing ALP candidates that have been exposed as such?

One other question for you as I can see it in Calgary but I'm not sure in Edmonton...  Do you think the majority of ALP voters understand the difference between ALP policy and NDP policy?  I find a significant number of ALP votes in Calgary come from people that don't understand the difference between ALP policy and PC policy let alone understand what NDP policy would be...  As in the vote is anti-conservative instead of actually chosing a progressive alternative.  Heh, this is in part because of how horribly defined ALP policy is...  But do you find a similiar trend in Edmonton? 
 

 Malcolm:


Quote:
Thus, I can only see two logical reasons for you to insist on this dubious tactic

Could this be because Lord Malcolm cares not to read another opinion and perhaps see another reason?  The only thing I've insisted on is exploring the option.  Do you check for right-wing activists under your bed before sleep by any chance?  Oh, I did take into account that 1+1=1.75 works out to 1.5 since the other .25 goes to the conservatives (as shown by my John Chan example if you bothered to read it).

Quote:
Now don't get me wrong - I'm all in favour of political realignment.  But the only political realignment that will deliver a progressive alternative is one in which progressive voters wake up to the fact that the Liberal Party, even if it wins, will never deliver progressive change.

Hey, someone give the Lord a hero cookie, he's discovered my point!  This is a possible chance to deliver that progressive alternative.  The ALP is more of a collection of resistance to tory rule (atleast in Calgary) than it is a philisophical left vs right stance... These votes in Calgary federally split between the 3 parties (more recently atleast, it used to unite more under liberal prior to Dion) and come together as ALP provincially as a semi united way of PC resistance, I've experience this on the streets door knocking and can find numbers to back the claim up.  Of course there are pc to green and ndp in there, and those are the 0.25 that may end up going back to PC in a merged scenario.  I've found Con to NDP is more common than con to lib here, which may suggest a united left party would be more able to attract Con voters than the ALP will ever be.  To reform to the left under a united vision, purge the right that infects the ALP, and bring together our resources is a bit of a dream for any left in Calgary.  All us naive left apparently.

The only example you've given for the 'always failing' merger, is one on a federal level, which is invalid on a provincial level as Alberta is a unique electorate after so many years of PC rule (and we have one example where it worked in Scotland apparently)...  You're completely right that it wasn't 1+1=2 in Ontario or across Canada when the crap party formed (canadian reform alliance party was a fantastic name. hehe).  Contrary to that, the merger was quite successful in Alberta...  152 309 PC voters and 577 551 PC voters in Alberta in '97 became 739 514 alliance voters in 2000.  If you take into account voter turnout, it's not quite 1+1 = 2, but damn close.  And correct me if I'm wrong...  But which party is the current minority gov't?  It took em a while to get the merger right and by no means happened over night.

Quote:
The only undeniable fact so far presented here is Lou's contention that the hard work of slogging in the trenches will pay dividends. 

Exactly, he's proven that through hard work Liberal voters can be brought to the NDP...  And you're arguing that even with the combination of our resources, more of these liberals would go Conservative before joining a united left.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Ken Burch wrote:

[Actually, considering that the SNP won the last elections for the Holyrood parliament, the merger between the Scottish Party and the National Party of Scotland can, in fact, be said to have worked for them.  

 

 

Except that the merger of the Scottish Party (I should have double checked the names) and the National Party of Scotland happened in 1934.  The resulting Scottish National Party did not win a seat until a 1945 byelection (which they lost at the general election), and then nothing until the Hamilton byelection in 1967.  The most seats they ever won in the Westminster Parliament was in 1974, fully 40 years after the merger.  After that, the party had a decade of decline.

 

So the recent success of the SNP in elections to the Scots Parliament can hardly be attributed to a merger 70+ years before. 

 

In fact, the SNP's success bears out Lou's interpretation of the Strathcona results.  Alex Salmond has had a singular focus on party and election organizing.

 

Breakthroughs are accomplished through hard work, not cheap gimmicks.

Stuart_Parker

I've never seen a successful election campaign that didn't involve both hard work and cheap gimmicks.

Edmonton Strathcona had a very effective cheap gimmick. Even as NDPers inveighed agianst the evils of strategic voting elsewhere in Alberta, they had a very focused message in Strathcona to Liberal voters that the NDP was the only strategic vote. That was a highly effective cheap gimmick when combined with a hard-working ground game.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

The development of effective targetted messaging requires a degree of subtlety and nuance I would not expect to find among those who believe the Liberal Party is progressive.

Stuart_Parker

Whereas strawman based messaging....

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Stuart, your entire premise from start to finish is based on the strawman premise that the Liberals are a progressive political movement.

 

Just because the Liberals aren't the Conservatives doesn't make them the same as New Democrats.  There are lots of parties that aren't the Conservatives, but I have no interest in building an electoral alliance with the Christian Heritage Party, the Libertarian Party and the National Law Party because none of them are remotely progressive.

 

"They aren't the Tories" isn't enough on its own - particularly since 100% of the examples of the Liberal Party in government anywhere in Canada indicates that their policies are largely indistinguishable from the Conservatives.

 

Any plan that is based on uniting parties simply because they aren't the Conservatives is beyond asinine.  It is fundamenally anti-progressive.

 

That stupid and counterproductive tactic is the exact opposite of building a real and electorally viable progressive alternative.

 

Far better to appeal to progressives who have naively gotten themselves involved with a right wing party by showing them there is another way.

Stuart_Parker

Malcolm, please find one post in which I label the Liberals OR the NDP as a progressive social movement. I do no such thing because that's not what I believe. I do not believe that either party will reliably take the positions that a progressive party should. I think that the NDP is slightly more likely to do so and that's about as good as it gets. But, when push comes to shove, both parties, given a choice, will enact neoliberal policies more often than not. Hence my bafflement at your belief in the sacredness of the NDP brand.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Perhaps it gives you solace to pretend that my argument is entirely about brand.  That doesn't make it any less a misrepresentation.

 

The NDP is a progressive political party.  The Liberals aren't.

 

Pretending that the Liberals and NDP have more in common than simply "not being Conservatives" is delusional at best.

 

A frankenparty made up of these two disparate parties is a harebrained scheme that will only benefit those Tories.

 

There are only two possible reasons that one would argue for a merger as a political tactic:

 

1) One is deluded.

2) One wants to make it easier for the Conservatives to win elections.

Stuart_Parker

Well, as they say on Monty Python, "this isn't argument. This is contradiction."

If you honestly think that the people who governed BC from 1991 to 2001 were "progressives" who were clearly distinguishable from Liberals, there is nowhere for this debate to go.

Have a nice time in your little echo chamber there. 

And if you're looking for people who want to "make it easier for the Conservatives to win elections," feel free to take a look in the mirror.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

The final proof that all you have to argue are Liberal Party apologetics.

Noise

Quote:
Pretending that the Liberals and NDP have more in common than simply "not being Conservatives" is delusional at best.

Yes, Pretending that the liberals are more like the NDP than the Conservatives is delusional...  What about pretending that Alberta voters after a 75 year conservative rule where the voter turnout dips below 40% in many ridings are actually taking the time to research the difference between ALP and NDP policy?  We're a unique electorate because of this, ALP attracts many 'not-conservative' voters that turnout to vote NDP/Green in federal election but unite as ALP provincially...  To suggest that many of these people even know what ALP policy is when it's so poorly defined tends to be a big stretch, and even a bigger stretch to know the differences between ALP and aNDP policy (I campaigned ALP before I knew there was a difference between ALP and NDP policy).

I find this insistance that all Alberta Liberal voters = Conservative voters equally dellusional, and the idea that the majority of them would vote for conservative before a united left is unfounded.  The numbers are posted in this thread, and EDM-Strathcona works as a perfect example of the willingness of Liberal voters to unite under a party further on the left before going to the Conservatives. 

 

Quote:
A frankenparty made up of these two disparate parties is a harebrained scheme that will only benefit those Tories.

Depends on the make-up of said 'frakenparty' and it's ability to purge the the presence of the right-wing members.

And how exactly would this benefit the Tories?  Oh, I mean beyond the massive majority they currently hold, the large amount of donations they receive, and the relatively broke and becoming broker status of the opposition parties that has come from current tactics?

Quote:
There are only two possible reasons that one would argue for a merger as a political tactic:

 1) One is deluded.

2) One wants to make it easier for the Conservatives to win elections.

This is only since you're intentionally blind to a third reason.  I look forward to a time where progressive Albertans have the opportunity to present the voters a progressive vision for our province...  Neither the ALP or aNDP are capable of doing so in their current state.  Tell me, is the desire for a united left to provide this vision fit under deluded or Conservative activism?

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

You miss the point (quel surprise).

 

I have never contended that all Liberal VOTERS are indistinguishable from the Conservative Party.  I contend (based on more than a century of accumulated evidence) that the Liberal PARTY is indistinguishable from the Conservative PARTY.

 

Thus, the Liberal PARTY has no role to play in overturning the Conservative agenda since the Liberal PARTY does not, fundamentally, disagree with that agenda.

 

There are, however, a significant cohort of Liberal VOTERS (including but not limited to Liberal-NDP swing voters) who do not support the Conservative agenda - and therefore, by extension, do not actually support the Liberal agenda.

 

Building a viable progressive alternative is a function of doing the hard work, over time, to attract these voters to a party that presents an actual alternative to the Liberal-Conservative agenda.

 

Unite the left by all means - even if that means the radical alteration of the NDP.  However, including the right wing Liberal Party in that process is fundamentally counterproductive.

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

It looks like a group of Liberals (with the support of their new 'progressive' leader) are interested in a new merged party. 

A party merged with Tories that is...

 

Quote:

Despite a new Liberal leader at the helm, a movement is afoot among
some Liberal supporters to start a new political party in Alberta.

....

(Defeated MLA Bruce) Miller has been told some Tory MLAs have been approached about the idea of forming a new party, a la the Saskatchewan Party.

Source: Calgary Herald

outwest

This has been likely all along.

 Now you know why it's imperative for what's left of the Liberals (probably 75-80%) to join in some kind of alliance with the NDP and Greens, or be defeated by attrition.  One has to see this possible new party as a gift - purging the party of Tory-leaning Liberals at the same time as pulling votes away from the Tories. One can only hope that this development pushes Swann even further to the left. If not, imo, he doesn't have enough political vision nor strength to make his leadership work. 

Either that, or he's secretly right wing, something I highly doubt. 

 

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

Are you being sarcastic?

Read the article - this is being done with the approval of David Swann.  

Like most Liberals, he's not as progressive as he portrays himself.

outwest

Here is an excerpt from the Calgary Herald article:

"Swann, chosen last month to head the Grits, said he's happy this
group and another focused on forming a coalition are debating political
alternatives. However, he believes they'll be won over by the Liberals'
coming reforms.

If a new party rises, Swann concedes it will pose
a threat to the Liberals
. He said he's open to meeting with the groups,
but while he supports a debate about changing the party's name, he
doesn't think disbanding the Liberals is the way to go.

"As far
as I'm concerned, the lines of communication are open,"Swann said. "We
all know the danger of yet another party splitting the vote on the
centre or the centre left."

I think he's totally supporting the democratic and fair right to debate and discuss electoral alternatives, but in no way does this article say that he would join or "approve" of such a new party. There's a big difference.

 

Noise

Malcolm:

Quote:
Unite the left by all means - even if that means the radical alteration of the NDP.  However, including the right wing Liberal Party in that process is fundamentally counterproductive.

You are completely right that including the right wing of the ALP is counterproductive, but this isn't the point I'm presenting.  Excluding the left wing members of the ALP because of the presence of right-wing liberals is what I'm calling counterproductive, especially given that a large part of ALP support comes from the anti-conservative vote that trends Green and NDP in federal elections now.  You're continually writing off the whole of the ALP as 'all cats' or 'A. Conservative hacks B. Deluded' since you can so easily see our political alignment by the ALP card we carry. 

Quote:
I contend (based on more than a century of accumulated evidence) that the Liberal PARTY is indistinguishable from the Conservative PARTY.

I agree with that entirely...  Not having an option thats noticably different from the Cons is, in part, why we've hit a 40% voter turnout. 

Quote:
Thus, the Liberal PARTY has no role to play in overturning the Conservative agenda since the Liberal PARTY does not, fundamentally, disagree with that agenda

Exactly my point!  Now can you see why some ALP members would want to reform with other parties on the left to provide an alternative to the Conservative agenda?  Or will you continue to call this stance deluded/Pro-Conservative?

 


Lou, I find that article confusing as ****:

Quote:

Swann, chosen last month to head the Grits, said he's happy this group and another focused on forming a coalition are debating political alternatives. However, he believes they'll be won over by the Liberals' coming reforms.

So he's supporting the motion but thinks it will be overtaken by his coming Liberal reforms?  Is the approval from Swann simply approving the discussion of political alternatives, or is he appoving of the lib-con merged party?  I dunno, I've yet to get a good read on Swann.

outwest

 

Noise,

I don't believe Swann isn't approving of a Lib-Con merge party at all as Lou is trying to suggest. (Personally, I think Swann should approve of it as it would draw away the rigid Liberals from his newly-led party, and help split the Cons.)

As an inclusionist, Swann's saying is that, at this point, he supports democratic, open, and transparent all-party discussions of all political matters by those disenchanted with the Tories, clearly hoping, ultimately, that they'll see that HIS newly-led centrist-left Liberal party as the best alternative.  

Imo, he'll need to take things a lot further than than - work jointly and strategically with the Greens and NDP to bring his party more seats down the road. He hasn't ruled that alternative out, and, frankly, I think he'd be foolish to. Othewise, the Tories will have conquered and divided, yet again.

 

 

Noise

My only real info on Swann comes from his environmentalism work right now...  It would make sense that he'd have common ground with Greens pretty readily, but thats a general assumption on my part and I couldn't back that up at this time.

 I think Swann's statement goes towards the 40% of Alberta politics...  Hearing any poltical discussion in this province is a positive really.

You're right, Swann will have to do quite a bit more than that...  I think, assuming he truely wants to define himself as 'left', his first steps will be to call out a few of the right leaning ALP members.  I'm curious what Swann is referring to with 'Liberals coming reform' as well...  The idea that the ALP needs defined policy that is clearly a distinct and progressive alternative to Conservatives isn't exactly a new idea within ALP circles, I'm wondering what Swann has in store here.

outwest

 

I don't know, but I hope he doesn't come up with more of the same old same old. Albertans only care about one thing and that's keeping their well-paying jobs. The opposition parties need to reframe the debate to include a discussion about that as a big part of the discussion along with the other important issues -eduction, health care, etc., environment - or, imo, they'll be hitting their head against the proverbial well, yet again.

 

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Noise, you have been advocating an institutional merger of the Alberta Liberals and the Alberta New Democrats.  By definition, that INCLUDES the right wing majority in the Liberal Party.  By definition, that PRECLUDES it being a progressive alternative.

 

Now, please stop misrepresenting me.  I have not said that everyone who has ever held a Liberal membership is a "cat."  However, they do belong to a "cat" party, whether they realize it or not.  Uniting a "cat" party to a "mouse" party is simply silly.

 

If you want to realign the left to build a viable progressive alternative, you don't do it by bringing in the right wing majority of the Liberal Party into an institutional merger - which is (however much you spin it) what you have proposed.

 

You have this fixation on merger as the only means of voter realignment - and I grant it would bring about some voter realignment.  But it would not bring about any sort of PROGRESSIVE realignment. 

 

Currently Alberta has three major parties:

- a right wing party (Conservatives)

- a right wing party with a cohort of progressive voters (Liberals)

- a progressive party (New Democrats)

 

You are advocating a merger between the second right wing party and the one progressive party as a means of building a progressive alternative.

 

Lou and I have pointed out a series of reasons that proposal is both naive and counterproductive.  You now claim to accept those criticisms, and seem to believe that it is possible to include the Liberal Party in a merger while excluding the majority of Liberals.  Talk about counterintuitive.

 

Here's an alternative for you.  There are two ways to "merge" the cohort of progressive Liberal voters with the only progressive party:

- persuade those progressive voters to support a party which more closely reflects their views, or

- have a reorganization of the only progressive party with an explicit invitation to other progressive voters.

 

You will notice that the right wing institutional leadership of the Alberta Liberals are not necessary or desirable in either of those alternatives.

Noise

Malcolm:

Quote:
Now, please stop misrepresenting me.

Ha, pot calling the kettle black.  Please stop doing the same to me...  You've managed to represent me as a "Conservative Activist", tried to accuse me of "claiming that NDP objections are about institutional identity.",  and countless other misrepresentation based solely on my ALP membership.

Even in your last post: 

Quote:
Noise, you have been advocating an institutional merger of the Alberta Liberals and the Alberta New Democrats

Actually no, but thanks for yet another misrepresentation...  If you'd bother to read, I've been advocating using this opportunity to create a united left, attracting the ideological ALP vote.  One of my first posts that got me into the thread:

Quote:
As far as I'm concerned, this is an opportunity for those on the left to give a single defined vision that we've lacked for so long.  Every reason you (BK) have listed here isn't a reason to resist a merger, it's a reason to drop the ALP completely and redefine the party based on a 'united left' vision for Alberta.

bleh, I can find an example of this position in nearly every post...  Did you completely ignore this one too? 

Quote:
I see this as an opportunity for those ideological ALP members to be brought into a united left, as opposed to bringing NDP members into the Liberal fold.

That comment came out when you pointed out that anyone suggesting a united left in Alberta = Conservative activist though, so I can see how you'd skip reading the posts entirely yet continue to respond to them.  Perhaps we should stop misrepresenting each other then? 

Quote:
Lou and I have pointed out a series of reasons that proposal is both naive and counterproductive.  You now claim to accept those criticisms

Well ya, if you've noticed, I explicitly asked to know those critisims several times during this thread because NDP members would know them better than I, and (in your nicely condescending words 'Believe it or not') I'll take Lou's word as valid critisms, with the exception of disputing the notion that Alberta Lib voters will vote Conservative before a United Left.  Unlike you, I've come to learn, not spew the same biased 'All ALP members are corporate sellouts/conservative activists!!!' shit over and over and over again.

Quote:
and seem to believe that it is possible to include the Liberal Party in a merger while excluding the majority of Liberals.

And once again you pretend to know the majority of ALP members political stance, since you so obviously can tell where the individual stands based on a party affiliation.  FYI, best part about ALP party membership is it's completely seperate from federal Libs and we can go back to Green or NDP federally...  Ah no, that couldn't be possible, what with all ALP members obviously being conservative activists in your eyes.

Quote:
You will notice that the right wing institutional leadership of the Alberta Liberals are not necessary or desirable in either of those alternatives.

Well duh, you may have noticed I've agreed on that several times.   You will have NOT noticed that one of my questions I asked Lou in this thread was towards the ability of a combined Left party to out the right-wing ALP  candidates and defeat them in nominations.  Did you not pick up that point when I posted:

Quote:
For me, this becomes the biggest part in the question of feasibility.  In a new party, would the left presence be enough to prevent the nomination of right wing ALP candidates that have been exposed as such?

 

Sorry Malcolm, I should apologize as this has gone beyond silly.  Especially considering when I look at it, we are presenting the same point to some degree:

Quote:
Now don't get me wrong - I'm all in favour of political realignment.  But the only political realignment that will deliver a progressive alternative is one in which progressive voters wake up to the fact that the Liberal Party, even if it wins, will never deliver progressive change.

This is my entire point.  This IS the opportunity to present the progressive alternative and bring the left together...  Until then, the ALP will continue to receive the majority of the progressive vote (or anti-conservative) outside of a couple select ridings in Edmonton, under the false pretense that the ALP is an alternative to the Conservatives.  We rally around ALP here in Calgary as the alternative in anything provincial, but the movement is towards more progressive parties Federally...  I think the same rally would occour for a united left.

This point in particular:

Quote:

- have a reorganization of the only progressive party with an explicit invitation to other progressive voters.

The numbers I've been posting in this thread were intended to point out that voters would go for this new progressive alternative before voting conservative and that there is a good number of Calgary based ALP members (which you insist are either conservative or naive) that want exactly this.

My position in the thread hasn't change any...  This was from my first post directed to you:

Quote:

 Do you think all Alberta Liberal party members are hard-core corporate sell-outs then, or can you see that alot of us Alberta Libs agree with you? 

Would it be at all possible to have this discussion knowing that there are ALP members that are agreeing with you?  That dislike, even despise, the right wing presence in their partY?

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

outwest wrote:

I don't believe Swann isn't approving of a Lib-Con merge party at all as Lou is trying to suggest. (Personally, I think Swann should approve of it as it would draw away the rigid Liberals from his newly-led party, and help split the Cons.)

After re-reading (more carefully this time) the Calgary Herald article,
I have to admit that there isn't as much evidence of Swann's support as
I led babblers to believe. Not that there is evidence he opposes it
either.

However, I still believe your hope that this plan will draw away the right wing Liberals is naive.

The Herald article references former MLA Bruce Miller, and a local
blogger posted an email from another former MLA Mo Elsally admitting he
was part of the group.  A prominant Local blogger (and sometimes staff
person) has also admitted to being part of these discussions.  All
three of these individuals could easily be described as being on the so
called 'left' of the Liberal party.  Miller is a former United Church
Minister known for his concerns about poverty in the city.

The only people speaking up against this plan seems to be Liberals who hold on to the brand.  See this link. That's the fault line, not a right-left debate.

Now, in case your answer to this is to suggest the NDP merge with
the breakaway Liberals, let me also note that CBC radio reported
yesterday that the breakaway group has approached the Wildrose Alliance
party to see if there is any common ground.  For those of you not from
Alberta, the Wildrose Alliance is a party to the right of the PCs,
fighting endless battles against same sex marriage and other hot button issues of the right.  I can't see why any
progressive person would want to be alligned with them, or anyone who
wants to be aligned with them.

outwest

 

That's exactly what I'm saying , Lou. The breakaway group sounds as if it has far more in common with the Conservatives and the Wild Rose Alliance than it does with left-leaning Liberals, and thus, I hope they DO split away from the Libs. It would help split the Tory vote, too.

ALL progressive Liberals and NDPS whom I know in this province are eager to unite the centrist and centrist-left vote, somehow. If those progressives are all that's left of the Liberals to support Swann, I think that's great as it means he'll be pushed towards 3 party cooperation by their very presence. It clarifies things a great deal, imo, instead of the muddy mess we've had in this province since Decore's time. 

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

Are you seriously suggesting Bruce Miller is on the right wing of the Alberta Liberal party?

outwest

 

I wouldn't think so, but the article makes it sound as if the Liberal
breakaways" are throwing their lot in with the Tory disenchanted...And it also sounds as if they're doing it solely because they don't much like Swann or the direction he's taking - which, to my mind is pretty left-leaning centrist. So what, exactly, is it that they're unhappy about if not that?

 

We're really just twisting in the wind, here, though, because obviously the convoluted article doesn't really spell things out clearly.

It did make reference to another group wanting a more progressive government springing up, however; I know there's more than one out there forming already, and I think we'll be seeing them pop up during the next year in the press. 

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

In fact, I have never said anything even vaguely resembling 'All ALP members are corporate sellouts/conservative activists!!!'

 

The fact is that the Alberta Liberal Party is a right wing party and the institutional leadership of the Alberta Liberal Party broadly supports that direction.

 

I have expressly acknowledged that there exists a cohort of ALP members and voters who are not aligned with their party's actual position.  Personally, I wonder why the hell they're there, since they are a marginalized progressive minority in a right wing party.  Some clearly believe that their presence modifies the ALP.  There is no objective evidence to support this belief.

 

The key to political realignment, frankly, is to bring that cohort of progressive voters "home" to the only progressive party.  If some reorganization of the NDp would make that easier, then fine.  Personally, I think it would be seen as a cynical smoke and mirrors gimmick.

 

As to the contention that the majority of ALP voters would be more likely to support the Stelmach Tories over a merged left party, that is based on looking at published public opinion research.

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

outwest wrote:

 

Actually, there's a groundswell movement for major change and cooperation between the three parties taking place in Alberta already. Right now it's just talk and a few small meetings of academics, lawyers, and politcos, here and there, but here's hoping it will move into the mainstream public arena sometime in 2009, and that it WORKS. 

Talk and a few small meetings of academics does not equal a groundswell.

The NDP voted 95% against a merger, the Greens don't want it, and at least half of the Liberals are against it to.

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

outwest wrote:

I totally agree that Swann was naive to have mentioned a sales tax - but heh, how many of our leaders have said incredibly inane political things and never been condemned for it? I'm not going to lose faith in a thoughtful and committed leader just because of one or two mis-timed comments.

Mistimed?  Please tell me when would be a good time to propose a sales tax in Alberta?  When the Tories beat him over the head with it for three years, will his answer be to say "I didn't mean to propose that until later"?  The guy is a disaster waiting to happen, hoping that the Tories won't accept the gift Swann just gave him is naive.

As for your statement that you "don't think that 190 people in a hall speak for the entire party" according to the constitution of the NDP, in fact they do.  They certainly speak for the party with far more authority than the 5% that voted in favour of the resolution.

You can call Mason myopic and self-serving (as if there is anything self-serving about being Alberta NDP leader) all you want, but people would call him far worse if he ignored the overwhelming message he recieved from his party's last convention.

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

outwest wrote:
 

73ish seats of 82 or so are held by Tories. And you don't think that those in the opposition don't need to unite? You're dreaming if you don't. Do the math. 

Good idea.  Let's do the math.  

I can't find the link, but shortly after the last election, See Magazine published the results of a poll which asked Alberta voters what their second choice would be if their party wasn't on the ballot. More Liberal voters chose the Tories over the NDP.  NDP voters chose the Liberals over the Tories, but a fair number of our supporters would cast a ballot for Stelmach before Taft.  

In other words, if either party was off the ballot, the Tories would get more votes.  In Edmonton Calder, the Liberal vote collapsed, and most of it went Tory, allowing Stelmach to gain a seat at the expense of NDPer David Eggen.

The plan is short sighted, goes against opinion research, ties the NDP to an ineffective Liberal leader, and asks NDP leadership to go against the wishes of party activists.  

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