The decline of the Conservatives

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Misfit Misfit's picture

There seems to be a deep paranoia on this thread about social conservatves and especially those in Alberta and Saskatchewan.

First of all, social conservatives are found all across this country and not just in Alberta and Saskatchewan. In fact, Ontario elected Doug Ford with the help of social conservatives in that province, and his changes to sex education appeal to his social conservative base.

Secondly, social conservatives are a minority in Canada including in Alberta.
 

The Walrus published an article about social conservatism and Alberta. I've included an excerpt from that article to highlight the fact that while the province does have issues and problems, they are also pretty open minded on a lot of the social conservative issues which plague our nation.

https://thewalrus.ca/the-great-myth-of-alberta-conservatism/

"Many Canadians ­also associate Alberta with social conservatism—an ­assessment that isn’t ­entirely baseless, to be clear. A ­majority of the province—63 ­percent—supports ­reinstating ­capital punishment. Immigration questions, ­especially, are fraught: a ­recent poll by the Environics Institute and the Canadian Race Relations Foundation showed that Albertans are more skeptical about the validity of refugee claimants than other Canadians are, and 62 percent said too many new ­immigrants don’t adopt Canadian values. Commentators also cite Ralph Klein’s ­extreme reluctance when premier to support same-sex marriage in 2005 as well as the United Conservative Party’s ­current antagonism to gay-straight alliances in schools as representative examples of the provincial political id. Kenney has recently had to confront a bevy of questions relating to his earlier statements on abortion and gay rights.

But some of these examples are exceptions, ones which gain a high profile ­nationally because they fit a certain narrative about the province that doesn’t always reflect the political positions of the electorate more generally—or, indeed, even of ­big-tent conservative parties in which social conservatives remain a powerful and vocal minority that must be placated. Take one litmus-test issue for conservatism, for instance: abortion. Faron Ellis, a research chair at ­Lethbridge College, has run surveys on six contentious social issues every year since 2009. The most recent poll, in 2018, found that 84 percent of Albertans support a woman’s right to make abortion ­decisions. And national polls frequently place Alberta’s support of abortion rights within a few points of Ontario’s, Ellis has found. (Other ­surveys have found that Atlantic Canada is the region most ­opposed to abortion; it now reliably votes for the pro-choice Liberals.)

Albertans have grown noticeably more progressive on several other social questions in recent years as well, according to Ellis’s research: 92 percent support legalized medical marijuana, and 85 percent support doctor-assisted death. ­Support for same-sex marriage now stands at 82 percent (up from 66 percent when Ellis began tracking).

Despite the economic situation, a stark majority of Albertans—82 percent—polled last spring in an expansive social ­survey conducted on behalf of the CBC believed that more should be done to reduce the pay gap between men and women. ­Almost as many believe action should be taken to reduce wealth in­equality. ­Only about half of those polled trusted the private sector to create jobs, and almost 80 percent felt the province was too reliant on the oil-and-gas sector."

Social conservatives are everywhere. Please lay off with your Alberta and Saskatchewan bashing please.

 

Sean in Ottawa

Sorry it is not bashing to point out that social conservatives are more likely to be electorally successful in Alberta and Saskatchewan and parts of BC than they are in the centre or east. They are more likely to stand for the Conservatives in those places as well.

There is also a social democratic tradition in the same places (as dormant as it sometimes may seem to be). Very different from the East on both ends. In some ways it is refreshing and more honest having more on the edges and less in the mushy middle but it certainly exists.

I think we need to step back from all these bashing accusations and really consider what overdoing it means. When you make a charge generally, your argument will be judged on the weakest point you make. There are clear cases of Alberta bashing here but you discredit those who would want to call those out when you take a position like this where a region cannot be questionned for what is an observable fact agreed on by literally all sides.

As for Ontario, social conservatives exist but they tend not to do well and are more moderate when they do. They are a political weakness not a strength everywhere except for a minority of places. When they exist they tend to hide it as the political culture here tends to be more Liberal, centrist, mushy and indistinguishable. Our politics are dominated by opportunists without any political ideology at all. I find this gets in the way of progress and do not consider it a selling point here. It is however a fact all the same.

It is patently ridiculous to suggest that Ontario politics is as socially conservative as politics is in those two provinces and even more ridiculous to accuse people of west SK or AB bashing to raise the question. 

Posts like this do more damage to the reputation of those provinces than the actual bashing here that actually does exist.

Please consider the dangers of crying wolf. Seriously.

This bashing accusation stuff is overwhelming political discussion and making attempts to deal with prejudices more difficult. We have it with the extremes of anti-semitism accusations at anyone who questions anything the state of Israel does and we have it with regional politics in Canada, particularly Quebec, Ottawa, the West in general and AB in particular. We need to stop this as it will blow up the country.

We need people to raise legitimate and uncomfortable points of view that you may not like while at the same time reserving terms like "bashing" for the real thing so that we can do something about it. Otherwise, every disagreement will  be a "somebody-bashing" exercise.  We talk about trends here and that can include regional politics. To make it so we cannot talk about trends like Conservatives in the rural part of the country being a thing without causing offense; northern NDP politics; Conservative Prairie politics; urban Liberals; centrist Maritimers etc -- becuase these are not abosulte and there are exceptions is to kill off much analysis that must happen here.

If you continue this line, you might get back a long list of quotes from social conservatives who agree as well as support the notion speaking about Canada's bible belt. 

Let's start that off with this:

Robert Alexander Grambell, Toward defining the prairies: region, culture and history (2001)

Also look at this:

https://pressprogress.ca/here-is-a-list-of-67-conservative-candidates-who-will-vote-against-womens-reproductive-rights/

Sure not all anti-choice Conservatives are in AB and SK but the three top Prairie provinces are 3 of the top 4 provinces for this list and SK is double the rate of Ontario. Is Press Progress SK bashing or are they publishing news becuase it exists? Interesting is the point about NB. There is a Conservative part of NB different from the rest of the Maritimes. It is a rural, Anglophone and evangelical Christian part of the province. NB is the fourth province to have more than 1/3 Conservatives be openly anti choice. Not so in the rest of the country.

Yeah, social conservativism is a thing on the prairies and no point denying it.

Back here we have the Liberal disease. 

Pondering

Of course there are social conservatives elsewhere. That's why the Conservatives have been able to win federal elections since forever. I'm not paranoid. Quite the opposite. I am hopeful that social conservatives will be the downfall of the Conservative party. 

Your article misleads with  statistics. 84% of Canadians don't support unfettered access to abortion so that would make Alberta far more progressive than the country as a whole. How are all those pro-life MPs getting elected?

http://www.arcc-cdac.ca/presentations/anti-choice-unknown-MPs-2016.pdf

https://globalnews.ca/news/3290006/support-for-abortion-rights-strong-in-canada-but-poll-shows-we-are-middle-of-the-pack-globally/

Among those in favour of abortion rights in Canada, just over half (53 per cent) said the procedure should be permitted whenever a woman decides she wants it, while one in four (24 per cent) favoured some limits. If a woman has been raped, for instance, some respondents suggested she should then be able to choose to terminate her pregnancy.

Social conservatives within the party want a leader who will defend them more vigorously than Harper and Scheer. They think the problem is that the party does not defend its social conservative principles. Abortion is far more important than gay marriage. That's why they are talking up having a leader that will march in Pride not one that is pro-choice.

Also from your article... “If you want to understand Alberta, understand this: we love our social programs, we want to live in a fair and equitable ­society, we don’t like paying taxes, and we don’t trust Ottawa.”....Voters in this province are deeply ­attached to the “Alberta advantage”—a catchphrase that lionizes the province’s perpetually low taxes and excellent services, made possible through natural abundance.​

Alberta/the prairies dominate the Conservative party. That is why all ridings were equalized rather than having one member one vote to elect Scheer. 

The future of the Conservative party as a national party depends on the following questions. 

Do social conservatives have enough power to insist on a socially conservative leader? If not, will they support a non socially conservative leader? 

Will Conservatives support a leader that promises not to touch the carbon tax and focuses on climate change as a major issue that requires government intervention?

Sentiment on the environment is getting stronger every year and not just on climate change. Substances poisoning our environment are a huge issue as well. 

I am not against Albertans. I think most are misguided on the oil industry. I fear for the future of Albertans. A 20% unemployment rate for young men is disastrous. The future of TM is critical. I lean on the side of it going through but I think the opposition still has a realistic shot at stopping it. 

Whatever you want to call it Alberta has a different political mindset than the rest of Canada. All you have to do is put in a sales tax like the rest of us. Put a cap on exports and your price problem was solved. Should have been done years ago. Alberta seems to think it is entitled to the Alberta advantage. 

P.S. Thanks Sean. 

Misfit Misfit's picture

I have no problem with people criticizing Alberta. Just be honest. It does a great disservice to spread hatred and fear against people from Alberta. It is doubly wrong when much of that hatred is exaggerated.

From that Walrus article that I provided in the previous post we get a totally different picture than what is presented in this thread. Fear mongering based on lies and distortions is just as bad as the social conservative agenda that we need to stand up against.

From that article, here is the truth about Alberta.

1. Alberta is right wing. It is the most right wing province in Canada.

2. Alberta as a whole is pro oil and gas and against environmental reform.

3. Alberta has a major problem with racism. They tend to strongly support regressive immigration laws.

4. Alberta as a whole is socially liberal and not socially conservative. 82% of Albertans support same sex marriage. 82% support pay equity and feel that more needs to be done to promote financial equality between men and women. 84% are pro choice. 85% support doctor assisted suicide. 92% support the legalization of marijuana. These numbers are very much in line with the rest of Canada. Based on these numbers, one can conclude that social conservatives represent roughly 14-15% of the general population. Social conservatives are a very small minority in Alberta.

Ontario elected Doug Ford. Doug Ford has a regressive sex Ed agenda. Yet no one obsesses with the social conservative menace that Ontario is inflicting one the rest of the country. The argument given is that Ontario as a whole is socially liberal in their outlook. Well so is Alberta liberal in their outlook. You cannot attack Alberta for electing Jason Kenney and be conspicuously quiet about the very same problem in Ontario. Ontario votes Progressive Conservative and they need to be held accountable for what they have done. Alberta is responsible for the actions of Jason Kenney and the policies he puts forward because they elected him. But the policies of Jason Kenney does not reflect the social values of the people any more than Doug Ford's positions are an indication of the social values of the people in Ontario. You simply cannot have it both ways.

There are social conservatives in every region of Canada. Yet this thread singles out one region of Canada only and demonizes them as a national threat. Atlantic Canada is the most socially conservative when it comes to abortion rights and access, but the social conservative threat according to a few stems from Alberta. Ontario has in place an awful sex education agenda but Alberta is singled out as our national problem. And yes, this is a bias against Alberta.

The religious right do not hold a monopoly on hatred and bigotry. They are major promoters and bigots look to the religious right to justify their hate. Jason Kenney has an agenda to target LGBTQ people. The religious right support these initiatives, but Kenney's bullying has more mainstream appeal than just from the small minority of religious fundamentalists. Gay bashing  is still alive and real.  That is why LGBTQ positive education is so vital and important in the school system because homophobia is still a serious issue that needs to be taken seriously and programs put in place to combat it. This problem is not limited to social conservatives and it is a national problem and not unique to Alberta and the prairies.

All political parties have social conservatives. They are everywhere. Justin Trudeau made it Liberal policy that no one can run for the Liberal party as a candidate who opposes a woman's right to choose. He did this because social conservatives are a problem in the Liberal party. If the Liberal party was free of social conservatives then he would not have had to implement that policy. They are in the NDP as well.

Most people in Alberta do not elect social conservative candidates in their ridings based on their social values or religious affiliation. The vast majority vote Conservative and UCP because they like the idea of having smaller governments so that they don't have to pay as much in taxes. They get to keep more of their money. In fact, that is a major reason why most Canadians who vote for the Conservative party want them elected. They simply want smaller governments and lower taxes. And if that party that promises them small government and more take home pay does bad things like picking on LGBTQ people, it is sad and unfortunate but if it doesn't affect them personally, then they really don't care. Many Canadians are really not that politically minded. They aren't bad people, they just don't care if it doesn't affect them personally.

The Conservstive party elected Andrew Sheer. Andrew Sheer is a social conservative. If Andrew Sheer or any other major political leader who is socially conservative is clear that he or she is not going to open any contentious issues up for debate then their own personal values become less potent. Stephen Harper kept his social Conservative MPs muzzled and in the back benches. Many political advisors within the Conservative party understand the damage that hot issues like abortion access can have. It is on their best interest to avoid those issues. Remember, 84% of Albertans are pro choice.

Social conservatives have always been around. Despite their deep history and roots in our country, they still only represent a very small and insignificant percentage of our national population. They tend to get elected in safe right wing regions of our country like in Alberta because they also run on a fiscally conservative platform which appeals to people who like to pay less in taxes. The walrus article addressed the issue of racism and immigration. The majority of Albertans are racist and the Conservstive party promotes immigration law reform. There are many issues which are not social conservative related which explains why they support right wing governments.

While all the social issues are extremely important  and worthy of discussion and full accountability by Conservstive leaders on where they stand and the direction they intend to take their party, the obsessive fixation about social conservatives in Alberta singles out the region as being the force of evil and overlooks the same problems closer to home for some of the posters. It fails to look at the national scope to these problems. It demonizes the people of a province who most of whom do not even identify with what they are being accused of by some on this thread.

feel free to attack Alberta but only do so with integrity.

Sean in Ottawa

Misfit wrote:

I have no problem with people criticizing Alberta. Just be honest. It does a great disservice to spread hatred and fear against people from Alberta. It is doubly wrong when much of that hatred is exaggerated.

From that Walrus article that I provided in the previous post we get a totally different picture than what is presented in this thread. Fear mongering based on lies and distortions is just as bad as the social conservative agenda that we need to stand up against.

From that article, here is the truth about Alberta.

1. Alberta is right wing. It is the most right wing province in Canada.

2. Alberta as a whole is pro oil and gas and against environmental reform.

3. Alberta has a major problem with racism. They tend to strongly support regressive immigration laws.

4. Alberta as a whole is socially liberal and not socially conservative. 82% of Albertans support same sex marriage. 82% support pay equity and feel that more needs to be done to promote financial equality between men and women. 84% are pro choice. 85% support doctor assisted suicide. 92% support the legalization of marijuana. These numbers are very much in line with the rest of Canada. Based on these numbers, one can conclude that social conservatives represent roughly 14-15% of the general population. Social conservatives are a very small minority in Alberta.

Ontario elected Doug Ford. Doug Ford has a regressive sex Ed agenda. Yet no one obsesses with the social conservative menace that Ontario is inflicting one the rest of the country. The argument given is that Ontario as a whole is socially liberal in their outlook. Well so is Alberta liberal in their outlook. You cannot attack Alberta for electing Jason Kenney and be conspicuously quiet about the very same problem in Ontario. Ontario votes Progressive Conservative and they need to be held accountable for what they have done. Alberta is responsible for the actions of Jason Kenney and the policies he puts forward because they elected him. But the policies of Jason Kenney does not reflect the social values of the people any more than Doug Ford's positions are an indication of the social values of the people in Ontario. You simply cannot have it both ways.

There are social conservatives in every region of Canada. Yet this thread singles out one region of Canada only and demonizes them as a national threat. Atlantic Canada is the most socially conservative when it comes to abortion rights and access, but the social conservative threat according to a few stems from Alberta. Ontario has in place an awful sex education agenda but Alberta is singled out as our national problem. And yes, this is a bias against Alberta.

The religious right do not hold a monopoly on hatred and bigotry. They are major promoters and bigots look to the religious right to justify their hate. Jason Kenney has an agenda to target LGBTQ people. The religious right support these initiatives, but Kenney's bullying has more mainstream appeal than just from the small minority of religious fundamentalists. Gay bashing  is still alive and real.  That is why LGBTQ positive education is so vital and important in the school system because homophobia is still a serious issue that needs to be taken seriously and programs put in place to combat it. This problem is not limited to social conservatives and it is a national problem and not unique to Alberta and the prairies.

All political parties have social conservatives. They are everywhere. Justin Trudeau made it Liberal policy that no one can run for the Liberal party as a candidate who opposes a woman's right to choose. He did this because social conservatives are a problem in the Liberal party. If the Liberal party was free of social conservatives then he would not have had to implement that policy. They are in the NDP as well.

Most people in Alberta do not elect social conservative candidates in their ridings based on their social values or religious affiliation. The vast majority vote Conservative and UCP because they like the idea of having smaller governments so that they don't have to pay as much in taxes. They get to keep more of their money. In fact, that is a major reason why most Canadians who vote for the Conservative party want them elected. They simply want smaller governments and lower taxes. And if that party that promises them small government and more take home pay does bad things like picking on LGBTQ people, it is sad and unfortunate but if it doesn't affect them personally, then they really don't care. Many Canadians are really not that politically minded. They aren't bad people, they just don't care if it doesn't affect them personally.

The Conservstive party elected Andrew Sheer. Andrew Sheer is a social conservative. If Andrew Sheer or any other major political leader who is socially conservative is clear that he or she is not going to open any contentious issues up for debate then their own personal values become less potent. Stephen Harper kept his social Conservative MPs muzzled and in the back benches. Many political advisors within the Conservative party understand the damage that hot issues like abortion access can have. It is on their best interest to avoid those issues. Remember, 84% of Albertans are pro choice.

Social conservatives have always been around. Despite their deep history and roots in our country, they still only represent a very small and insignificant percentage of our national population. They tend to get elected in safe right wing regions of our country like in Alberta because they also run on a fiscally conservative platform which appeals to people who like to pay less in taxes. The walrus article addressed the issue of racism and immigration. The majority of Albertans are racist and the Conservstive party promotes immigration law reform. There are many issues which are not social conservative related which explains why they support right wing governments.

While all the social issues are extremely important  and worthy of discussion and full accountability by Conservstive leaders on where they stand and the direction they intend to take their party, the obsessive fixation about social conservatives in Alberta singles out the region as being the force of evil and overlooks the same problems closer to home for some of the posters. It fails to look at the national scope to these problems. It demonizes the people of a province who most of whom do not even identify with what they are being accused of by some on this thread.

feel free to attack Alberta but only do so with integrity.

I object entirely to this post. It is saying that people who are expressing a commonly held opinion - that is backed up with fact as lacking integrity.

You can be defensive if you like but you owe people an apology for that.

These are opinions on an opinion site and nobody is lacking integrity or being dishonest.

Your comparisons to Ontario have been challenged but you do not respond to the challenges instead you repeat them and seek to stifle the opinions as illegitimate and lacking integrity. This is actually outragious.

Your comments are also inaccurate. Nobody has said Alberta is a monolith. This is a straw man you are erecting here.

Please think seriously about this line of argument. People here are not your enemy. Alberta and Saskatchewan have a right wing bend and this is not even controversial. All but one seat is held by the right wing party. Your attacks on the honesty of people here is absurd even if you dislike the opinions. Right wing commentators have made this argument themselves as the area is the bedrock of their support.

kropotkin1951

Thanks Misfit for the great post.

Ontario elected Doug Ford. Doug Ford has a regressive sex Ed agenda. Yet no one obsesses with the social conservative menace that Ontario is inflicting one the rest of the country. The argument given is that Ontario as a whole is socially liberal in their outlook. Well so is Alberta liberal in their outlook. You cannot attack Alberta for electing Jason Kenney and be conspicuously quiet about the very same problem in Ontario. Ontario votes Progressive Conservative and they need to be held accountable for what they have done.

From my perspective the people of Ontario sent 36 right wing assholes from the Conservative party to Ottawa to destroy what I believe in. The people of Alberta sent 33.  BC sent 17.  Altogether it seems that their are right wing voters everywhere in Canada. If I want to point at crude right wing voters then lets talk about Eastern Ontario in places like Brockville.

Sean in Ottawa

kropotkin1951 wrote:

Thanks Misfit for the great post.

Ontario elected Doug Ford. Doug Ford has a regressive sex Ed agenda. Yet no one obsesses with the social conservative menace that Ontario is inflicting one the rest of the country. The argument given is that Ontario as a whole is socially liberal in their outlook. Well so is Alberta liberal in their outlook. You cannot attack Alberta for electing Jason Kenney and be conspicuously quiet about the very same problem in Ontario. Ontario votes Progressive Conservative and they need to be held accountable for what they have done.

From my perspective the people of Ontario sent 36 right wing assholes from the Conservative party to Ottawa to destroy what I believe in. The people of Alberta sent 33.  BC sent 17.  Altogether it seems that their are right wing voters everywhere in Canada. If I want to point at crude right wing voters then lets talk about Eastern Ontario in places like Brockville.

Let's just forget the fact that the majority of seats in Ontario did not go to Conservatives because that does not fit into this silly defensive argument that pointing out that the rural Prairies are a social Conservative bastion is somehow an attack on these two provinces.

Let's ignore that these two poor hard done by provinces with only one seat exception went wall to wall conservative and return social Conservatives on a regular basis. Let's forget that the greatest conentration of people who represent extreme social conservative positions come forom there. 

But better yet, let's defend this dumb idea on the basis that it is okay to attack Brockville becuase it is in Ontario than to admit that more social Conservative politicians come from Saskatchewan and Alberta as a percentage of all representatives than anywhere else. After all who gives a flying fuck about hypocrisy when you are on a roll?

Social Conservatives are terrible no matter where they are from in the country, Alberta and Saskatchewan or not uniformly social Conservative - but nobody has said that here - ever. It is not an attack on Saskatchewan and Alberta to observe that a shit load of Social Conservatives keep coming from there on a regular basis and maybe we need to do something about that.

Here in Ontario sure we have some - also some greedy Libertarian fuckers as well. Our problem here, though, is Liberals getting in the way of any progressive movement. We admit that on this site.

But please attack Ontario for having voted for Ford after all, it was widely seen as throwing out a Liberal government that had been there for 15 years. Ontario is such a Conservative place that people here have been voting to keep the fuckers out for 15 years. Oh yeah - when was the last time this was done in Alberta? Any time since 1935?

This way we can advance one of the stupidest arguments seen on babble in a while.

voice of the damned

@Sean,,,

I think we might want to be careful, though, about conflating voting habits with support for social conservativism.

Someone mentioned above that there was a New Brunswick Bible Belt, mostly anglo and Conservative, where SoCon values are popular. Well, my recollection of anti-choice politics in the Maritimes is that it goes a little bit beyond just one eccentric region of New Brunswick. Unfortunately, information about this is hard to find on-line, but as I recall, successive New Bruckwick governments waged a campaign against abortion-services in New Brunswick, starting with Frank McKenna, a LIBERAL who never seemed to pay much electoral price for that position.

I also have a vague idea that abortion-access has been hobbled in other Maritime provinces, though, again, it's hard to find information about that.

Sticking to New Brunswick, sure, compared to Albertans, they generally send fewer Conservatives to both Fredricton and Ottawa, no one is denying that. But that's not neccesarily the best yardstick for how they actually approach social issues in practice.

voice of the damned

Sean wrote:

Ontario is such a Conservative place that people here have been voting to keep the fuckers out for 15 years. Oh yeah - when was the last time this was done in Alberta? Any time since 1935?

If we're talking about social conservativism in particular, an overview covering the entire period since 1935 is a little problematic for your argument, because people like Peter Lougheed and Don Getty weren't really social conservatives in any widely recognized sense of the term. Likely no more so than most other Canadian governments at the time.

Social Credit under Aberhart was certainly SoCon, though economically radical(that being the reason they were elected in the first place), albeit in a kooky sort of way, with an economic theory rooted in anti-semitic conspiracy theories and a program that was highly unconstitutional. It is the case that, under Aberhart, they were probably the government in Canada at any level that was most hated by big business.

 

Sean in Ottawa

voice of the damned wrote:

Sean wrote:

Ontario is such a Conservative place that people here have been voting to keep the fuckers out for 15 years. Oh yeah - when was the last time this was done in Alberta? Any time since 1935?

If we're talking about social conservativism in particular, an overview covering the entire period since 1935 is a little problematic for your argument, because people like Peter Lougheed and Don Getty weren't really social conservatives in any widely recognized sense of the term. Likely no more so than most other Canadian governments at the time.

Social Credit under Aberhart was certainly SoCon, though economically radical(that being the reason they were elected in the first place), albeit in a kooky sort of way, with an economic theory rooted in anti-semitic conspiracy theories and a program that was highly unconstitutional. It is the case that, under Aberhart, they were probably the government in Canada at any level that was most hated by big business.

 

I think it is pretty ridiculous even having to defend an observation that the Prairies are associated with much higher than Canadian average levels of social Conservatism. 

This is apart from the point that we are not even in a debate about the existence of social conservatism in Alberta and SK we are in a debate about whether a person raising this is  lacking "integrity" and somehow attacking the place for even raising the topic. 

Western Canada (yes all of it) has tended to be more polarized meaning that it has been the home base for many social Conservatives as well as socialists. They do Liberal to a lesser degree. This is not a criticism by any means (who here is defending Liberals?) but it is observable in the political conversation that goes back many decades.

There is a perception of Alberta and more recently Saskatchewan as being through and through conservative but nobody is suggesting that here. It is however more likely to have a political conversation that speaks to ideology on left or right than centre. This may be based on the fact that the politics on the Prairies tends to populism more than establishment -- becuase they are not establishment and are reacting agaisnt it. It is more populaist that conservative but the streak of socila conservativism is still more pronounced there an most places in Canada -- even if it is not a majority -- it is a tendency and manages to dominate politcsat times.

The heart of the social conservative voices in Canada keeps coming from there. Ford is a bit of a a faux populist but has shown little social conservatism and more establishment mean Ontario-style Conservativism. the social conservatives when they come up in Ontario they usually do not do well. 

To say that the Prairies are different is not an insult.

 

 

voice of the damned

There is a perception of Alberta and more recently Saskatchewan as being through and through conservative but nobody is suggesting that here. It is however more likely to have a political conversation that speaks to ideology on left or right than centre.

Again, though, I'm really not seeing much difference between the government of, say, Peter Lougheed in Alberta, and Bill Davis in Ontario. Apart from the issue of the NEP(in which they both fought for the economic interests of their respective provinces), both were pretty much centrist, neither particularly left-wing or right-wing.

And I really don't see what sort of "centricism" was on display during the rule of Mike Harris(or for that matter, Ralph Klein, for sure). I know it's now being stated as an absolute fact that that Doug Ford will be voted out next election, and quite possibly he will, though I would caution against the assumption that politicians can never overcome low polling numbers.

And FWIW, I think Alberta does have a unique political culture, even compared to the rest of the west. But it's not so much an issue of right/left, it's an issue of one-party dominance, with ideological shifts taking place via changes within the ruling party itself, rather, as is usually the case elsewhere,  via changes in government. I think this is likely connected to the resource-extraction basis of the economy, but that's not something I'll get into right now.

 

voice of the damned

Oh, and here's some information on abortion access in New Brunswick as of 2014...

Access to abortion in New Brunswick is governed by Regulation 84-20 of the Medical Services Payment Act, created by the Frank McKenna government in 1989. The regulation states that medicare will only cover the cost of an abortion if a woman first jumps through a number of procedural hoops: She must obtain written approval from two doctors, certifying that an abortion is "medically necessary." The abortion may only be performed by a specialist, and only at one of two authorized hospitals.

Granted, I think the situation might have changed since 2014, but still, I am unaware of any western province that has ever had such a law on its books. The closest I think they ever came was when Klein tried pandering to his SoCon wing by saying he'd defund abortions that were medically "unneccessary", and then asked the doctors' association to define that term. When the doctors refused to provide such a definition, the proposed law was squashed, and has never been resurrected.

Can't guarantee that Kenney won't try something on this front, nor would I deny that there are some access-issues in the westen provinces. Still, if those provinces were particularly SoCon in relation to the rest of the country, you would expect them to have the worst record when it comes to abortion, pretty much the most beloved issue in the SoCon catechism.

https://tinyurl.com/vjo5bm6

 

 

 

 

 

kropotkin1951

Here are some of your neighbours Sean in Ottawa. Just in case you didn't notice.

On September 3, 1983, a group of Ontario women formed what would become known as REAL Women: Realistic, Equal, and Active for Life.[4] REAL Women was dissatisfied with how feminist organizations addressed women's issues, and said that many housewives felt disparaged and attacked by these organizations.[4] REAL Women was formed as an anti-feminist counterweight to the National Action Committee on the Status of Women.[5][6][7] A press conference was held in 1984 officially announcing their formation. The group claimed initially to have 10,000 members, however this was later discredited.[4] The year following their formation, the group held its first national conference, claiming to have 20,000 members, though this could not be verified.[5]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/REAL_Women_of_Canada#History

As for Brockville, I actually lived there for over two years and loved the old mansions but I think its politics are best described with a picture of residents and a Quebec flag. Hell they nearly cost us the country not some yahoos from the West.

 

Misfit Misfit's picture

Jesus Hallelujah people are politically organized and run for office in an organized and determined way. But they don't represent the general population in Saskatchewan and Alberta.

On the prairies, it is learned from a young age that Conservatives are cool and social democrats are nerds and losers. Conservatives attract the ignorant vote, people who are racist, redneck, your pipeliner, biker types. Yes, they also get the social conservative vote but they are a small minority of the overall picture.

Social conservatives have their small pockets where they are stronger, but overall the are pretty much non-existent as an issue. In fact, I am more worried about the ignorant, uneducated, pipeliner, truck driver, biker appealing types who are in-your-face bigots, racists, sexists, and everything else that I despise because these are your main threat on the prairies.

You see more social conservatives on the national stage coming from the west but their social values do not represent the vast majority of people, only their fiscally conservative and racist agendas, and nobody ever talks about social issues. It is all Trudeau bashing, immigrant bashing, environmentalist bashing, vegetarian bashing, and pipelines.

We have social conservative MLAs provincially. I am sure that they would like to see abortion access denied and our sex education curriculum changed etc., but those issues do not ever come up or hardly ever. If they were serious issues here, then you would hear about them, but you don't. And if the social conservatives were in the numbers that you imagine them to be then we would have no abortion access in Saskatchewan, and sick sex education curriculums that you Ontario people face with Doug Ford. Saskatchewan is not a backward province. We do not register on the radar for anything remotely associated with a socially conservative agenda. Alberta makes the news because they have a premier who is a bigot and wants to regress Alberta from a status of normalcy to a regressive and backward status. If Alberta people were socially conservative like you imagine, then there would be no programs in place in Alberta for Jason Kenney to take away.

Your Jesus hallelujah types are organized and get national attention because they are right wing and run on a fiscal platform that appeals to the majority of people who want to pay less in taxes and have more take home money for themselves.

Nobody on this board likes social conservatives. Although they get elected within the Conservative party and they are organized to push some clout within the Conservative party, they do not represent much of a base within the Conservative party. That is why Harper muzzled them.

And this ignorant undereducated mass vehemently loathes and despises Justin Trudeau. You could put the most obnoxious Jesus Hallelujah in the helm of the party and he would win because he is not Justin Trudeau. It doesn't mean that they are Jesus Hallelujah people, it means that their leader is from western Canada and is NOT Justin Trudeau. This demographic is quite scary and intimidating, actually. If you talked about this then you would be speaking to central core of what is wrong on the prairies. When you fret incessantly about social conservatives ad nauseum, you are merely discussing a perception that is perpetrated by the media. It is all smoke and mirrors. Social conservatives are militantly organized and know how to get elected in right wing regions of Canada. They create an illusion that the prairies stand for their ideals. They represent only a small yet vocal minority who very rarely, if ever, get their own way because they are really that insignificant of an entity. Saskatchewan has historically lead the nation on social and progressive issues. We are not  socially backward like you try to make us out to be. Aside from that blue collar, red neck demographic, most of us are more classy and sophisticated than you portray us as being, so yes, your bashing us on social conservative ideals does misrepresent us and perpetrates fear and hatred. It is dishonest and it misses the target of what is really wrong out here.

voice of the damned

Misfit wrote:

They represent only a small yet vocal minority who very rarely, if ever, get their own way because they are really that insignificant of an entity. Saskatchewan has historically lead the nation on social and progressive issues. We are not  socially backward like you try to make us out to be. Aside from that blue collar, red neck demographic, most of us are more classy and sophisticated than you portray us as being, so yes, your bashing us on social conservative ideals does misrepresent us and perpetrates fear and hatred. It is dishonest and it misses the target of what is really wrong out here.

Well, assuming the current batch of tea-leaves are being read correctly, it seems as if Saskatchewan MIGHT be heading in the same direction as Alberta, in terms of enshrining right-of-centre, one-party dominance, at least on the federal level.

But, if that happens, it'll likely be connected, as in Alberta, with the emergence of the oil industry as a major player in the province. Not because Saskatchewanites have all suddenly started reading old copies of Listen, America! from the local Goodwill stores.

Of course, electing more Conservatives means that you'll likely get more SoCons, even if you were voting on economic issues rather than "biblical ones", because SoCon politicians these days tend to be Conservative. 

But, as you say, that's not the same thing as the electorate itself being SoCon. Assuming such would be a little like assuming that, since Manitobans vote NDP more often than Ontarians do, there must be lots of people in Manitoba who share the same viewpoint as Canadian Dimensions magazine. Whereas, as we all know, the strong-left among NDP voters is pretty much a minority anywhere, and there were probably as many Manitobans who voted for Howard Pawley in '81 because they were creeped out by Sterling Lyon's smile, as there were who wanted to nationalize major industries. 

https://tinyurl.com/r57e2gf

 

voice of the damned

One more thing... 

Misfit wrote:

Aside from that blue collar, red neck demographic, most of us are more classy and sophisticated

I'm not sure if we should be equating "blue collar" with "rednecked".

I suppose the typical image of a right-wing religious conservative might be someone working on a farm or driving a pick-up truck for somebody else, though most of the people I know who would fit the bill are more middle class, maybe petit-bourgeois, in the classical terminology.

Certainly, I think most labour unions would consider "working class" to be a non-pejorative term, and would not want it and its synonyms equated a priori with people fight against equality on the social-front.  

Pondering

I'm talking about the Conservative Party not the people of provinces in general with the exception of the point that Alberta dominates the Conservative Party. It wouldn't matter if PEI were 100% social conservative or libertarian because PEI does not dominate the Conservative Party. 

Misfit, I think you my have misunderstood my perspective. I think the conservative/liberal social divide is along rural/urban lines not provincial lines. It just so happens that a lot of Canada's rural areas happen to be in the prairies. Nevertheless social conservatism has a strong presence in some areas of every province. There tends to be an overlap with fiscal conservatism as distinct from free market capitalists who tend to overlap with libertarians. I think social conservatives in Alberta tend to be more militant but the Conservative party is home to all social conservatives regardless of where they come from. That gives them clout, as a group, within the party. 

Separately from that the prairies particularly Alberta dominate the Conservative party. That puts oil high on the agenda. 

The Conservative party is also home to free market capitalists who style themselves as libertarians. 

So the strong influences within the party in my opinion are:

  • Social conservatism
  • Fiscal conservatism
  • Free market capitalism
  • Albertan/prairie interests

Those influences overlap and I have no idea how strong each faction is only that they exist and will be jockeying for position.

There are a large number of Conservatives that don't care about social policy or just accept it's a losing proposition so are willing to drop social issues. For example, Rona Ambrose among many others. The editorials are full of analysis concluding that a social conservative cannot be elected PM. The money people think social conservatives have had their shot and need to accept defeat, but still keep supporting the party. It's not like they have anywhere else to go. The reform party didn't make it. 

That may be true, but when people don't feel represented they will form a party they know won't win. Witness the Bloc. The NDP gets votes even when they are low in the polls. Alternately social conservatives could just stay home and not vote out of lack of motivation. The Conservatives can't afford to lose chunks of their base. That's why they merged. 

Free market/libertarian Conservatives have no other home and they do priorize winning over purity. 

What I call fiscal Conservatives is probably what other people call red tories.

As you noted Alberta is more right wing than any other area of Canada. 

The Conservatives have been doing a balancing act since they reunited.  They give a little bit to each faction. Lower taxes for free market and fiscal conservatives. Lower regulations for free market libertarians. No abortion funding outside of Canada and many pro-life MPs that are allowed to speak and to vote their conscience, social conservatives leaders in Harper and Scheer. Tough on crime legislation also for social conservatives. Something for everyone.  As the party is trying to reject having a social conservative leader, social conservatives are getting more militant as they are encouraged by what is happening south of the border on abortion. 

Canada isn't 84% pro-choice. Alberta certainly isn't. your statistics include people who want laws at the 3 or 5 month mark. Pro-choice is 100% between a woman and her doctor. 

 

 

 

kropotkin1951

Pondering wrote:

I'm talking about the Conservative Party not the people of provinces in general with the exception of the point that Alberta dominates the Conservative Party. It wouldn't matter if PEI were 100% social conservative or libertarian because PEI does not dominate the Conservative Party. 

Not in a leadership race. The Conservatives elected Scheer in a weighted vote by riding.

Voting was on a one member one vote basis using a ranked ballot; however votes were calculated so that each electoral district had equal weight with each electoral district allocated 100 points.[35] Candidates were assigned a point total based on his or her percentage of the vote in each electoral district. To win, a candidate must receive at least 16,901 points which would be a majority.[2][36]

Given your use of PEI as an example it delivered the second highest percentage of first ballot votes to Scheer for the four ridings compared to other ridings by province.  A higher percentage of Quebec Conservatives voted for Scheer on the first ballot than the percentage of Alberta Conservative voters who voted for him.

But the biggest thing to keep in mind is that Bernier received the most first ballot votes across the country and held his lead until the 12th "ballot" redistribution. So which one of them represents the true face of the evil social conservatives?

Bernier won the first ballot vote in Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, NFLD, NWT, Nova Scotia, Nunavit, Ontario, Quebec and the Yukon. Scheer won the other three provinces on the first ballot, Sask, NB and PEI.

With a weighted system for ridings then all the members in Calgary Center get the same weighted vote as all the members in the riding of Charlottetown despite my guess that there way more members in Calgary Center.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2017_Conservative_Party_of_Canada_leadersh...

voice of the damned

Persuant to the debate about Alberta's alleged monopoly on social conservativism...

As of Jan. 1, 2020, the legal age to buy or possess cannabis in Quebec is 21, giving the province the highest minimum age for cannabis use in Canada.

Elsewhere in Canada, cannabis is permitted at age 19, except in Alberta, where the legal age is 18.

I guess drug-paranoia might not be a SoCon stance per se, though if it were Jason Kenney giving Alberta the highest toking-age in the country, I doubt we'd be parsing the difference between "Something Pat Robertson would do" and "Something Nancy Reagan would do."

https://tinyurl.com/qnfvpz4

 

 

 

Pondering

The manner in which the leader is elected does not mean all areas of the country have equal impact on Conservative policy. Need I say money matters? 

From what I am am reading there are serious ideological differences between factions that mean no matter who wins the leadership there will be sore losers. 

https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/scott-reid-conservative-mp-party-dictatorship-scheer_ca_5e0e4182e4b0843d360f8b41?utm_hp_ref=ca-politics

It’s a situation that reflects the overall state of the Conservative caucus — “dictatorial in its demands” and “opaque in its management practices,” wrote Reid, who represents Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston.  

“Today, an MP who votes with his or her conscience, or the will of his or her constituents, on any matter where the leader wants a different outcome will, in punishment for his or her disobedience, be tossed out of shadow cabinet and possibly off of committees.”....

Reid included his personal experience as part of his wider analysis of how Conservatives “should be leading, instead of lagging, on democracy issues.” Reid said he’s not writing out of dislike for Scheer, but because he has a number of suggestions for the next leader, including supporting an elected Senate and citizen-led referendums, and restoring free voting among MPs.

Allowing both libertarian and social conservatives to speak would make the internal war public. As long as both are forced to silence the party can pretend it is on both sides but doesn't have enough power to deliver. 

https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/conservatives-2020_ca_5e0e11abc5b6b5a713b6f68c?utm_hp_ref=ca-politics

But the party has been running on much the same platform since Harper first formed government in 2006, said Dean Tester, a Conservative strategist who has worked on several party campaigns, including that of Scheer’s main rival in the 2017 race, former minister Maxime Bernier.

“Is running with that platform enough to get it done in the 2020s? Can we win with the exact same coalition and same policies with a different face? To me, I don’t think so,” he said....

Take supply management. That a party whose ideology is rooted in free-market capitalism continues to advocate for government control over the supply of some agricultural goods is a sore spot for many, and abolishing it was the centrepiece of Bernier’s leadership campaign.

But to farmers who believe their livelihoods depend on it, supply management is a sacred program. Those farmers helped propel Scheer to victory in the leadership race by just a hair over Bernier. 

So, in 2018, an effort at the party’s convention to abolish support for supply management never made it to a vote.....

Where there appears to be unanimity is that whomever seeks the job (party leader) must bring a robust set of policy ideas to the table.

Many insist more enthusiastic support for LGBTQ rights and a more ambitious approach to climate change must be among them, though there are others who insist hewing closer to the Liberals in either area is wrong — morally, strategically, or both.

Bernier himself warned as much in a fundraising email to supporters of his new People’s Party of Canada, suggesting that so-called Red Tories are out to hijack the movement and bring back the era of big government....

Reid is in the midst of a series of essays exploring themes he hopes leadership candidates take to heart and borrow for their platforms: democratic reform; finding a balance on issues of inclusiveness, equality and civil liberties; and the need for a clear vision on the economy and the environment.

“Not only will these suggestions help the borrowers to attract the support of median Conservatives like myself; the borrowers will also (I believe) stand a much better chance of winning the next election,” he wrote in his first essay about democratic reform. (He calls for an elected Senate, citizen-initiated referendums and greater powers for MPs versus party leaders.)

The leadership race can’t just be about winning that next election, argues Tester.

“For many Conservatives, myself included, there is a much bigger challenge,” he said.

“Are we going to be a party that seeks power for the sake of power, or are we going to be a party with a comprehensive vision for the country?”....

The only way the Conservative parties win is by convincing the public they are economically similar to the Liberals and will not act on social conservatism. 

 

Pondering

voice of the damned wrote:

Persuant to the debate about Alberta's alleged monopoly on social conservativism...

As of Jan. 1, 2020, the legal age to buy or possess cannabis in Quebec is 21, giving the province the highest minimum age for cannabis use in Canada.

Elsewhere in Canada, cannabis is permitted at age 19, except in Alberta, where the legal age is 18.

I guess drug-paranoia might not be a SoCon stance per se, though if it were Jason Kenney giving Alberta the highest toking-age in the country, I doubt we'd be parsing the difference between "Something Pat Robertson would do" and "Something Nancy Reagan would do."

https://tinyurl.com/qnfvpz4

No one here has alledged that Alberta has a monopoly on social conservatism so what are you arguing? Are you arguing that the west isn't a dominant force in the Conservative party?  Or are you arguing that social conservatives aren't a dominant force?  Both those things can be true without a single social conservative coming from Alberta. 

You want to argue every area of Canada is equally socially conservative I'll agree because it really doesn't matter. 

My focus is on how the different factions within the Conservative party will impact the leadership race and how they will react to whomever wins because in my opinion they are coming apart at the seams. 

Pondering

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/social-conservatives-leadership-1.5418035

The upcoming leadership race may serve as a test of just how much sway social conservatives hold in the Conservative Party.

In the 2017 leadership race, with the help of support from groups like Campaign Life Coalition, former MP Brad Trost came in fourth place in a field of fourteen candidates. The eventual winner, Andrew Scheer, also had socially conservative leanings.

After Scheer failed to dislodge the Trudeau Liberals in the recent election, some Conservatives argued Scheer's apparent discomfort with media questions about abortion and LGBTQ rights alienated too many potential voters.

Many social conservatives say that argument amounts to an attempt to shut down one side of the debate within the party....

Too often in the past, Gunnarson said, social conservatives have felt like the Conservative Party of Canada took their votes for granted without taking action on the issues that matter to them.

"It's not a difficult thing to get social conservatives involved," he said. "But it certainly is difficult to keep them involved when we get people who betray us or ... there's a lot of pressure coming from the Red Tories or the media that say we don't have a voice, or say we shouldn't even have a voice. And that's just ridiculous."

He points the finger at Scheer and "anybody who was or is considered a social conservative and turns his or her back on issues like abortion or even traditional marriage."....

Décarie calls for defunding abortion services and said he also wants to change the definition of marriage so that it exclusively applies to religious weddings (everything else would be considered a civil union).

"I think conservatism by itself is the respect of what was good in society in the past," he said.

I don't know how much power social conservatives have within the party but they certainly form a sizable group. Social conservatives split for Reform/Canadian Alliance. Bernier didn't appeal to them so that Bernier failed to split the party is not a sign of the party's strength. It may even be a sign of the party's devotion to social conservatism. 

The Canadian Alliance's origins were in the Reform Party of Canada, which was founded in 1987 as a populist party supporting Western Canadian interests. However, soon after its formation it moved sharply to the right and became a populist conservative (largely socially conservative) party. Initially, the Reform Party was motivated by the perceived need for democratic reforms and by profound Western Canadian discontent with the Progressive Conservative government of Brian Mulroney. Led by its founder Preston Manning, the Reform Party rapidly gained momentum in western Canada and sought to expand its base in the east. Manning, son of longtime Alberta Premier Ernest Manning, gained support partly from the same political constituency as his father's old party, the Alberta Social Credit Party.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadian_Alliance#Background

Western allienation and social conservatism birthed the Reform party and the Canadian Alliance. Bernier appeals to neither group so it is no wonder he failed. 

Social conservatives are not stepping back. It remains to be seen if they have enough power to impact the leadership choice but many high level conservatives and conservative pundits are all but declaring social conservatism dead to the point where their views are unspeakable. 

I very much expect the party to elect someone like Rona Ambrose who has a chance nationally. Assuming that happens the question becomes "what will social conservatives do about it".  Will the Reform/Canadian Alliance be reborn under a new name? If not will social conservatives be inspired to vote? 

The other major issue is climate change. The Conservatives know they have to deal with the file but is it possible to have a program even as good(bad) as the Liberals without infuriating Alberta? 

 

jerrym

Pondering wrote:

I don't know how much power social conservatives have within the party but they certainly form a sizable group. Social conservatives split for Reform/Canadian Alliance. Bernier didn't appeal to them so that Bernier failed to split the party is not a sign of the party's strength. It may even be a sign of the party's devotion to social conservatism. 

The social conservatives have a potential candidate in Pierre Poilievre, although he semi-masks his views, just like Harper. He has some advantages in being from Alberta but represents an Ottawa riding and is bilingual. However, his attack dog reputation could hurt him. 

After Scheer failed to dislodge the Trudeau Liberals in the recent election, some Conservatives argued Scheer's apparent discomfort with media questions about abortion and LGBTQ rights alienated too many potential voters.

Many social conservatives say that argument amounts to an attempt to shut down one side of the debate within the party.

"I don't think anybody with their authoritarian dialogue has the right to dictate some issue off limits and others not," said Tanya Granic Allen, an outspoken social conservative who ran for the leadership of Ontario's Progressive Conservatives in 2018. ...

Gunnarson did reveal that none of the people his group is urging to run is a current federal MP. He said that, of the current crop of potential leadership candidates being talked about in the media — Rona Ambrose, Peter Mackay, Jean Charest, Erin O'Toole and Pierre Poilievre — it's Poilievre whose record looks the most promising to the Campaign Life Coalition.

"Poilievre has a good track record, a good voting record for our issues. [But] he's not somebody that is out there in a very public way about his position," said Gunnarson. His group tracks the voting records of politicians on abortion and other social issues, such as the definition of marriage and gender identity. Poilievre gets a "green light" from Campaign Life coalition with a "life and family issues voting score" of 94 per cent, he said.

That's not quite an endorsement of Poilievre, he added. "I'm not sure where he stands now. It really depends on what he says as a leadership candidate, whether or not he would get our support," he said.

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/social-conservatives-leadership-1.5418035

Pondering

Harper's answer was to humour the social conservatives by defunding foreign abortions and letting back-benchers try to formulate a bill and by not marching in Pride. 

The Liberals and the NDP will hammer any leader on abortion and LBGTQ2.  Canada is the only developed nation with no abortion law. Social Conservatives believe they are compromising and being reasonable arguing for a 3rd trimester law. Social conservatives expected more from Harper when he won a majority. So, social conservatives are being told they have to settle for less for the sake of electability at the same time as they are expressing disatisfaction with Harper and Scheer for not defending their beliefs. 

https://leger360.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Federal-politics-January-07-2020-1.pdf

From the numbers in this poll 22% of Conservatives think it is important for the leader to be pro-life. 82% think a balanced budget is important. 

Lots of other interesting numbers in the poll however I found it interesting that the poll did not include a question on the significance of climate change which seems a rather large oversight. 

I think the Conservative policy on climate change will be very important. 

JKR

Peter MacKay set to enter the Conservative leadership race today

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/mackay-tweets-leadership-1.5427544

It will be interesting to see if Jean Charest also runs for the Conservative leadership.

The "decline of the Conservatives" seems to have been greatly exaggerated as the "moderate" wing of the Conservative Party seems to be alive, well and very healthy. The Conservatives top-two position seems as safe as it has been since Confederation was established more than 152 years ago.

From McDonald to McKay??

Sean in Ottawa

As hopeful as the premise in the thread title is, it is not as accurate as we all would hope it would be. No that I suggest changing it becuase it still is nice to see.

JKR

I agree. "The Conservatives will likely continue to be the junior partner to the Liberals" is not a hopeful or captivating title. 

I think if McKay or Charest become leader the Conservatives improbable decline will become even more remote.

Sean in Ottawa

I said this in anger in another thread but the gist is very true: when the Conservatives get extreme they eventually get into power. When the left gets extreme they get taken out of the conversation.

There are three reasons for this:

1) the conservatives have so much uncritical power (Capitalized who hold no standard or condition for their support other than the damage they do to government and social justice) that they remain the alternate government and fall into power whenever the Liberals mess up no matter how extreme they are and

2) the conservatives are presumed to be the most credible and best on a whole raft of issues where they are not sufficiently criticized and objectively keep turning in a poor performance on (like managing the economy). The result is that they get forgiven their nuttyness.

3) They are not a building party. They are a wrecking party. Any anger with government (even if theya re themselves the cause) helps them

This is why they never will be in decline. They are the political partners of an economic system of exploitation and reward those who win in the game they built rigged against anyone else.

Pondering

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
 I said this in anger in another thread but the gist is very true: when the Conservatives get extreme they eventually get into power. When the left gets extreme they get taken out of the conversation.  

In Canada, nobody gets in power by being extreme unless we are talking provinces.  Canadians are passionately moderate. Life may be a bit tougher but we seem to be doing a great deal better than the rest of the world. A bird in the hand is worth two in the bush. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The conservatives have so much uncritical power (Capitalized who hold no standard or condition for their support other than the damage they do to government and social justice) that they remain the alternate government and fall into power whenever the Liberals mess up no matter how extreme they are and  

That was true in the past but if it were true now Scheer would be our PM. Conservatives know it and that is why they are so upset. Business as usual won't work. They are trying to play it down, avoid the topics, but there are two major barriers to power in the future no matter how bad the Liberals get. (so cons and climate change)

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The conservatives are presumed to be the most credible and best on a whole raft of issues where they are not sufficiently criticized and objectively keep turning in a poor performance on (like managing the economy). The result is that they get forgiven their nuttyness.  

All true but the times they are a changin. The so cons, in particular the "pro-life" contingent is not willing to be silent. They claim direct credit for electing specific MPs that are "pro-life".  The powers that be definitely want to brush this issue off the table. It is "do not discuss" territory. It is an elephant in the Conservative room.  From this article it seems the die-hard so-cons only represent 22% , so it seems the pragmatists will win control but it will be a hollow victory if they lose even 10%.  That is a big threat to electibility but it is not the only one nor the biggest. That's climate change/ the oil industry. It can't be swept under the carpet. People are very worried. The fires in California and Australia and here in Canada are alarming. The danger here is that people may be persuaded the Liberals are balancing the economy and the environment. They will not be convinced that a free market approach is the answer. Conservatives are still fighting the carbon tax and that is a losing battle. The public supports it. This isn't like anti-war protests that eventually go away or die down. The fall-out is increasing expotentially. 

The Conservatives don't use one vote per person, they are weighted by riding because otherwise the West dominates the party. McKay is being sold as the compromise unifying the party because he isn't from Ontario or Quebec. Saying and doing are not the same thing. I must admit it will help tremendously if TM physically pushes through. It will alliviate a lot of resentment if they get another boom. 

I can't find the reference off hand but I recently read that a poll found the Conservative brand to be identified as "old-fashioned and traditional". There was a time when that was reassuring. It represented stability.  For people who don't follow politics the Conservatives represented safety when disatisfied with the Liberals.  People still think it is the same PC party as existed in the past but it isn't. If they were honest and called it the Canadian Alliance they wouldn't win an election. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
  They are not a building party. They are a wrecking party. Any anger with government (even if theya re themselves the cause) helps them  

Now they are because they have taken on the extremism of the Republican Party. It has emboldened the free marketers and so cons. They gained power in the US so why not in Canada?  Canada didn't have as strong a so con movement so they tried to pick up immigrants figuring that they are often more socially conservative. It's why Kenny was put on that file, to get the immigrants away from the Liberals. They couldn't do it because they favor immigration based on economic need of the country not the immigrants and have a strong contingent of anti-immigrant followered. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
  This is why they never will be in decline. They are the political partners of an economic system of exploitation and reward those who win in the game they built rigged against anyone else.

And yet they have been in decline for decades; ever since the Reform party split off. The old guard, the PCs, lost the battle for moderation and pragmatism. Letting Harper take the Conservative Party reunited the party because the reformers thought that although Harper had to keep the PCs humoured by not being loudly reform but they did expect more from him when he won the majority. They accepted Scheer as an alternative to Harper believing him to be a reformer at heart as well. The so-con's complaint with Scheer is that he failed to defend his and their views. There is no way they are going to be happy with a non so-con leader. 

In post 84 of this thread https://rabble.ca/babble/canadian-politics/breaking-ctv-news-and-cbc-news-both-report-andrew-scheer-has-resigned?page=1#new you said:

 Elections will be won or lost on whether or not your potential support stays home and not on poeple crossing the divide.

So-cons will not cross over to the Liberals but they can decide to stay home. Because of the manner of the vote McKay will likely win, or someone else that isn't so con.  Membership and MPs from the west still dominate the party. The leader does not have control over their priorities. Unemployment for young men in Alberta is at 20%!!!! Imagine if that were Canada-wide.  It's no wonder there is a strong anti-immigrant pro-oil sentiment. The anger is visceral at this point. 

 It will also be won or lost on the conflict between the NDP and Liberals. Neither party has a path to victory that does not drive over the other party. 

That would be useless because the only way the NDP drives over the Liberals is as Liberals; as in under Mulcair. The NDP almost won under Layton and Mulcair by going Liberal. It is said parties often fight the battles of prior elections rather that the one they are in. We are in a time of revolution. A different style of revolution than in the past but a revolution nevertheless. Climate change and inequality are the two top global issues. Neither conservatism nor republicanism can address either. Conservatism's repuation as old-fashioned and dedicated to individual solutions brands them as rooted in the past not the future. The Conservative party has no direction to go in other than Liberal and many Conservative supporters will never accept that. They think the party is already too liberal.

The NDP needs a strong injection of realism and pragmatism which I interpret as focusing on inequality and climate change with concrete proposals that actually will deal with the ramifications of both. We need to both halt and develop mitigation strategies. We know which properties will be under water in 50 years no matter what we do.

We are constantly reading about growing inequality. We need a way to illustrate it clearly to the masses on repeat. The frequency with which I hear the talking points of politicians is nauseating but it illustrates what it takes to get the messsage across. You have seconds not minutes to get your point across. For those interested you need back up arguments but the message itself has to get through instantly. People need to recognize it as an economic time bomb. Only then will they insist political parties offer solutions. 

The NDP is not going to win with the old message that they are just like the Liberals but will follow through. The NDP needs to be bold and offer up real solutions to the real problems the 99% are threatened by. The 99% is everyone who can't afford to own  self-sufficient homes in multiple countries.

Sean in Ottawa

Pondering did you miss the part of how close the last election was? Had it not been for Ford they would have won. The rest of your article runs from this same faulty premise.

Pondering

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Pondering did you miss the part of how close the last election was? Had it not been for Ford they would have won. The rest of your article runs from this same faulty premise.

It wasn't Ford, it was that Scheer was offering the same policy which continues to be the only one the Conservatives have on offer. Cut taxes.  

I think you are underestimating the significance of climate change and income inequality. 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/stephen-harper-conservative-leadership-1.5437504

The most successful run in the history of Canadian federal politics is the Liberal Party dynasty that ran from Mackenzie King's first victory in 1921 to John Turner's defeat in 1984 — an era that was held together by successful successions. Liberal prime ministers were in power for nearly 51 of those 63 years.

Don't think it can't happen again because it can. If neither the Cons nor the NDP can gain the trust of Canadians we could be looking at Trudeau for years to come. The Liberals will not be squeezed out by the other two parties hugging the centre. It just makes the Liberals look like they are in the right place. 

In the past, swing-voter Canadians percieved the Conservatives and Liberals to be centre-right and centre left with the NDP farther on the left.  Liberals for programs and Conservatives to rein in the spending, big government small government but both so moderate a balance could be kept by alternating between the too. That left the NDP as the good ol' conscience of parliament but too nice to run the country.

Whether or not people consciously think in those terms the party balance is gone. There is no PC party despite McKay's attempt at revival. He claims he will unify the party but that isn't possible in a manner that will satisfy both Conservatives and Canadians.  

He will have to have a position on whether or not MPs will continue to be allowed to voice pro-life sentiments and propose legislation. Canada is the only developed country without any laws on abortion. Polls consistently show strong support for limitations on third trimester abortions. Trump attended a Campaign for Life march. They believe that babies are being murdered. They were instrumental in electing 50 MPs. They are Conservative members and volunteers. They will not be happy under McKay. This issue will come up during the next election. It brands the party as regressive and old-fashioned. They grudgingly succumbed to pressure on LGBTQ and say they won't re-criminalize cannabis. That hardly seems modern. 

There is no climate plan that will satisfy both Conservatives and other Canadians. Alberta will be pissed at anything credible and consider themselves betrayed, or the plan will be so weak it will be ridiculed. 

Cutting taxes is getting way too old-hat. While people still don't like paying taxes they don't want services cut. Conservative governments have lowered taxes so much they have no room to cut more without rapid damage to services like health and education. 

I've been reading about O'Toole. He has significant support but the threat he poses is more rooted in the debate he is forcing. 

 

Sean in Ottawa

Pondering wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:

Pondering did you miss the part of how close the last election was? Had it not been for Ford they would have won. The rest of your article runs from this same faulty premise.

It wasn't Ford, it was that Scheer was offering the same policy which continues to be the only one the Conservatives have on offer. Cut taxes.  

I think you are underestimating the significance of climate change and income inequality. 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/stephen-harper-conservative-leadership-1.5437504

The most successful run in the history of Canadian federal politics is the Liberal Party dynasty that ran from Mackenzie King's first victory in 1921 to John Turner's defeat in 1984 — an era that was held together by successful successions. Liberal prime ministers were in power for nearly 51 of those 63 years.

Don't think it can't happen again because it can. If neither the Cons nor the NDP can gain the trust of Canadians we could be looking at Trudeau for years to come. The Liberals will not be squeezed out by the other two parties hugging the centre. It just makes the Liberals look like they are in the right place. 

In the past, swing-voter Canadians percieved the Conservatives and Liberals to be centre-right and centre left with the NDP farther on the left.  Liberals for programs and Conservatives to rein in the spending, big government small government but both so moderate a balance could be kept by alternating between the too. That left the NDP as the good ol' conscience of parliament but too nice to run the country.

Whether or not people consciously think in those terms the party balance is gone. There is no PC party despite McKay's attempt at revival. He claims he will unify the party but that isn't possible in a manner that will satisfy both Conservatives and Canadians.  

He will have to have a position on whether or not MPs will continue to be allowed to voice pro-life sentiments and propose legislation. Canada is the only developed country without any laws on abortion. Polls consistently show strong support for limitations on third trimester abortions. Trump attended a Campaign for Life march. They believe that babies are being murdered. They were instrumental in electing 50 MPs. They are Conservative members and volunteers. They will not be happy under McKay. This issue will come up during the next election. It brands the party as regressive and old-fashioned. They grudgingly succumbed to pressure on LGBTQ and say they won't re-criminalize cannabis. That hardly seems modern. 

There is no climate plan that will satisfy both Conservatives and other Canadians. Alberta will be pissed at anything credible and consider themselves betrayed, or the plan will be so weak it will be ridiculed. 

Cutting taxes is getting way too old-hat. While people still don't like paying taxes they don't want services cut. Conservative governments have lowered taxes so much they have no room to cut more without rapid damage to services like health and education. 

I've been reading about O'Toole. He has significant support but the threat he poses is more rooted in the debate he is forcing. 

 

You have not been here recently I guess. The Conservative loss was in Ontario because of Ford. They were close enough that Ontario would have put them over the top. 

What you are saying is laughable when it comes to climate change and income inequality -- becuase Ontario just voted for that a year earlier and would have if the consequences of Ford's government were not almost all we talked about politically laast year. Also the rest of Canada collectively moved so much closer to the Conservatives that if Ontario had done the same we would have a Conservative government

I put to you that if the NDP or Liberals had won in Ontario in the last provincial election the federal conservatives would have swept the province like the provincial conservatives did.

Many people in the province are not politically savvy. The impact of the actual changes Ford did affected people in serious ways.

I know many, many, many people who vote NDP who voted Liberal to stop the Conservatives. They paid a heavy price -- these people do not like Liberals but they did this becuse of the degree the province is suffering under Ford and a deep fear that a federal Conservative government at the same time would screw us beyond repair. But it was not just a move between the Liberals and the NDP. While Canada moved 4% towards the Conservatives Ontario moved 2% away -- a swing of 6% in the opposite direction -- and that does not count strategic voting which was rampant.

But if you want objective proof here it is:

2019 Conservative results compared to 2015

BC 4% gain  

AB 10 point gain

SK 16 point gain

MB 8 point gain

Ontario 2 point loss

Quebec 0.7 point loss

NB 7 point gain

NS 8 point gain

PEI 8 point gain

NL 18 point gain

North roughly 5 point gain

It is fantasy to think that what Ontario was going through did not completely change the result of the election.

The average gain for the Conservatives overall was only 4% becuase Ontario is that big. Quebec barely budged and BC only gave them 4%. After that the gain was about 10% which would have been a massive majority. Even with BC and Quebec where they were it would have been a big majority had Ontario even matched the swing of  BC never mind the other provinces...

Yeah, by electing the Ford Conservatives - we took one for the team.

So now that you see these figures -- you should be terrified of the Conservatives winning the next election. Likely Ontario will go Liberal before the next election and federally it will swing to the Conservatives.

Sean in Ottawa

Actually Pondering -- let me be even more specific. People in Ontario hate Ford but it was one group of policies that has destroyed his government and Scheer's ambitions. Education.

Ford attacked students --  who cares right? They vote Liberal or NDP not at all or are too young. What Ford forgot was that they have parents. Those parents tend to be the suburb-living, better-than-average-income-earning folk that the politicians fight over every election. While the Liberals talk about helping the middle class (and actually only help the upper middle class), Ford attcked the middle income group from top to bottom. Ford took away billions from education damaging education, he took away OSAP affecting not only the poorest who rely on it most, but the upper middle income group who also now are excluded but used to get help. He did this by making the pie so much smaller that everyone was losing money at every level.

If you factor this into the resutls of the last election you can see why the Ontario Conservative vote declined, strategic vote increased and the Conservatives failed.

I expect that other provinces who actually follow Ontario politics also heard what was being done here and that the increases for the Conservatives were moderated outside Ontario due to Ford as well.

Scheer lost by maybe 1-2% of the vote (translated into seats) having won the plurality of the vote. I won't take the time to work out the number as I did this in another thread he lost many seats by a hair. The last election was much closer than it seemed.

Other Ford issues were damaging such as his attack on Toronto but this really did not affect the places that he needed to win. OSAP and education cuts did. Ford will lose the next election here over education above else. In this province, the population tends to be anti-union. Polls show massive public support for the teachers' unions for the first time in living memory.

Ford lost it for himself and his federal cousins on this one ministry. Don't think Ontario is progressive about income inequality or the environment -- I wish it was but it is not.

Ford has yet to make clear his full plans for health care but we all see the cranes with the wrecking balls in the parking lot. Many people are concerned about what would happen federally to healthcare if the Ford mentality ever got there.

BTW: there are divisions between federal and Provincial parties to be sure but there is no divison between fedral and Provinical Conservatives in  Ontario -- same people, same advisors. Same shit. Same flavour. As Leonard Cohen said: "Everybody knows." And Conservatives got a dose of their own policies and did not like it much. Normally conservatives try to shield themselves (their base)  from the pain they mete out to others and this time they failed.

Sean in Ottawa

Perhaps this can become a general Conservative party thread?

There is an article in the Hill Times that is quite interesting:

https://www.hilltimes.com/2020/02/17/senior-conservatives-seething-over-conservative-funds-refusal-to-share-scheers-700000-overbudget-expense-details-with-the-national-council/235761

In this article it states that Conservatives are upset about Scheer being over budget. There is a comment from a staffer: "a party staffer explained to them that it was because of the pre-writ campaign work."

The Hill Times did not notice the implications of this. If pre-writ work was buried in to expense budgets it means money was spent that was not accounted for as campaign work.

There are few barriers to what is spent before a campaign. 

1) that the money spent not be for the campaign directly

2) that it be accounted for properly 

There are no limits to pre-writ spending.

So this issue of having an expense budget bury the costs of what was to help a campaign, raises good questions about what exactly did they pay for before the campaign and why is this not from a budget that accounts for that directly?

Misfit Misfit's picture

This should have been put into a separate thread called alleged or possible Conservative election financial fraud unearthed. This existing thread title is wacky and has already been debunked.

Sean in Ottawa

Misfit wrote:

This should have been put into a separate thread called alleged or possible Conservative election financial fraud unearthed. This existing thread title is wacky and has already been debunked.

Why not just change the thread title as it makes no sense?

Misfit Misfit's picture

Wacky? Makes no sense? Yup!

bekayne

Image

Pondering

Just because people disagree it does not mean it has been "debunked". I am more convinced than ever and I am not at all alone. From the moment Scheer resigned there were editorials on how difficult it was going to be to replace him. Since then there have been more articles about the irreconcilable differences within the party and the difficulty in finding a means to keep their current support while winning more support in the east, particularly Ontario. 

The problem is the Conservative ideology has no means of dealing with current challenges of income inequality and climate change. They are doubling down on the carbon tax which Canadians and even the oil industry supports because it is against Conservative ideology. People want pharmacare. The Liberals won't do universal but they will at least do something. The Conservatives have nothing to offer. The only drum they have to beat is "lower taxes" "lower government spending". 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/millennial-conservatives-1.5443425

As the Conservative Party of Canada looks for a new leader, some young Conservatives are asking themselves what it would take to make their party more attractive to newer voters.

Dennis Matthews is one of them. He used to manage government advertising in Stephen Harper's PMO; these days he's a vice-president at Enterprise Canada.

In a recent Twitter cri de coeur, he reflected on what he described as his party's need to be contemporary.

The Conservative Party should embrace policies for the new decade, he said, by engaging on topics that matter to younger Canadians, such as the opioid epidemic and the spread of workplace automation....

 

Dennis Matthews

One thing I'd love to see on @Twitter or elsewhere is more discussions on conservative policies into the 2020s. What are the solid right-wing answers to poverty, insane housing costs, AI, opioid epidemic, manufacturing job loss, what social media is doing to society, China, etc.

Within the article they mention diversity and appealing to immigrants but lest we forget when the Conservatives sense they are losing out come the dog whistles. I'm sure it is only a small percentage of Conservative voters but the bigots and racists do tend to be Conservative supporters. They ditch the homophobia but the anti-abortion voters are getting restless. It's the social conservatives last hill to stand on. 

I have read in editorials that the party will not be able to satisfy its base while devising policy that will play well enough in the rest of Canada to gain the support they have not won in the past two elections even though Trudeau was and is not a strong opponent. 

  • They can't satisfy the anti-abortionists without alienating pro-choice voters and projecting an old-fashioned image.
  • They cannot attract the immigrant vote while using dog-whistles. A party used to be able to let its MPs support local issues like anti-abortion but that was before everyone started walking around with a videocam in their back pocket. Now it doesn't matter how insignificant an MP is their words will be recorded
  • And finally...

 

https://www.macleans.ca/opinion/the-real-betrayal-of-albertans-lifer-politicians-who-wont-tell-them-the-truth/

Kenney, Scheer, Teck, every major energy company that is not already in the oil sands, Bay Street, Wall Street, and the banking and insurance industries, all know that the days of oil are all but over. But the politicians are the only ones too frightened or too shameless to say it out loud.

There is no doubt that a concern about Canada’s regulatory process was the straw that broke the Teck camel’s back. But, in order for that to be the metaphorical last straw, the camel has to be already straining under several bales of hay.

The three heaviest bales in that load are the facts that the global price of oil is well below the point that would make the Frontier mine profitable, no one anywhere is predicting those prices will increase, and investors are fleeing the oil industry because the emerging global consensus is that if we don’t address climate change now the very existence of the human race is at stake.

That is not a claim being made by Greta Thunberg, or a wild-eyed Extinction Rebellion activist. That comes directly from the multinational investment bank JPMorgan.

The oil industry is in permanent decline. That has massive political implicationsfor the Conservative party. I don't think there are any policies that could satisfy Alberta in the coming years but westerners are going to have demands. They want help for the oil industry but the idea of further bail outs is extremely unpopular with Canadians. I think 85% of Canadians were against buying Trans Mountain. Increasing militancy of Conservative politicians on oil is not going to play well in Canada. 

For some reason many Albertans think we just don't understand so they will shout louder until they think we hear them. They can't wrap their heads around the notion that we could completely understand their argument and still disagree. Then there are others that think we are acting out of malice and anti-Alberta sentiment. They don't represent a majority or even a large minority but they are likely Conservatives. 

Ruptures do happen. If the Conservatives can't gain more support then they can't win an election. If they can't win an election then when people are fully fed-up with the Liberals the NDP will have a chance. Again think of the timing. Maybe the Conservatives can win another minority but their ideology and supporters prevent them from using socialist solutions. Canadians will be turning to government for solutions more and more as income inequality increases along with climate change. 

If I understand the science correctly there is a long lead time before we feel the impact of burning fossil fuels. Ever sinc we started burning fossil fuels we have increased the amount we burn every year. That means we are just tasting the edge of climate change right now. Every few years it will get noticably worse even if we stop burning fossil fuels tomorrow. This issue is going to get very emotional. Sentiment against burning fossil fuels is going to increase in tantum with the increasing impact of climate change. 

Even now when we communicate with some Albertans on this board it is evident that the lens through which we view the oil industry is very different from theirs. Alberta's argument is that as long as the world is going to burn oil it might as well be theirs. The counter argument is that it will add to the worlds supply not displace other fossil fuel burning and that the pipelines represent a local threat. The growing number of orphan wells doesn't help. 

Alberta/Sask blames the rest of Canada for their plight and they have a lot of power in the Conservative party. Policies that please Alberta/Sask will displease Ontario/Quebec. 

Debater

bekayne wrote:

Image

Hmm.  So the Conservatives are getting a nice 5-point bounce and the Libs, NDP, BQ & Greens are all down.

Sean in Ottawa

Pondering, I read your post. I am not able to agree that the Conservatives are in historical decline and I am not even sure if they are declining at the moment. I disagree that Trudeau was weak in 2015. After 9 years in power it was Harper who was weak and Trudeau as a brand was very strong. 

I think you mean some kind of historic decline and I think that there is nothing long term about the issues they have. I note you mention things that the Conservatives are associated with like oil. I do not think these are necessarily Conservative issues, The party is one of small government social and fiscal conservatism. Beyond that they will adapt.

If you mean a cyclical decline like what happens frequently then this may be the case due to their ascendency provincially and the difficulty that creates for their federal cousins. As I said without Ford I think Scheer would be PM now.

I think the Conservatives are quite possibly in a correction. Following this leadership race we can review where they are. I think for them MacKay may be a reasonable choice. I do not like the man but he would be a transitional leader towards a generational change and a number of policies and directions can be updated. Other parties will have to prepare for and presume that this will happen. I remain convinced that as the party of money in this country theya re in no danger of a long term decline.

JKR

Pondering wrote:

Just because people disagree it does not mean it has been "debunked". I am more convinced than ever and I am not at all alone.

I think it's ridiculous to have this pointless debate about whether the Conservatives are likely going to become a 3rd party while the Conservatives are clearly in first place in recent opinion polls and after they just won the most votes in the election we just had 4 months ago. It is possible that one day a few opinion polls will show that the Conservatives have fallen into third place. Until that happens your fanciful theory will be a pipe-dream not even worthy of serious debate. Until the Conservatives fall into third place this thread will remain pointless conjecture. As it is, current opinion polls are showing that the Conservatives are in first place. These opinion polls and the recent election completely debunk your baseless "theory."

 

Misfit Misfit's picture

Right wing ideology caters to the interests of the corporate business elites who have the money and resources at the their disposal to protect their interests. 

Pondering

JKR wrote:
 I think it's ridiculous to have this pointless debate about whether the Conservatives are likely going to become a 3rd party

There are tons of pointless threads on this forum. If I went into each of them to tell everyone that their debates on foreign affairs etc. are pointless do you think they will stop so there aren't so many boring topics on the first page? I get so tired of having to scroll endlessly to find the threads I'm interested in. People just have no consideration!

Maybe you should ask yourself why you participate in pointless threads. It's not like I dragged you in here. Maybe it isn't so pointless. Maybe you want to express your disagreement, or maybe you are a slave to your emotions and can't resist. Maybe I'm click-bait. Only you know what your motivation is for continuing to engage in a discussion that is pointless to you. 

Pondering

JKR wrote:
  while the Conservatives are clearly in first place in recent opinion polls and after they just won the most votes in the election we just had 4 months ago. 

They won the most votes in the election we just had, and yet they did not form government! How can that be? It seems first place in the opinion polls does not mean you win. 

JKR wrote:
 Until the Conservatives fall into third place this thread will remain pointless conjecture. As it is, current opinion polls are showing that the Conservatives are in first place.  

Of course it's conjecture. We don't know everything that will happen in the future. Certainly current opinion polls have no predictive power. Swing voters in the last few weeks of the election determine who will win. Most aren't even paying attention right now. People who are pissed at the Liberals want to send a message of discontent. That doesn't mean that if they were actually voting that is the choice they would make. 

In 2015 all three parties held first place at one point. No one ever thought the NDP could win in Alberta. If a few years earlier someone said they were betting on an NDP win they would have been scoffed at. What happened in the past is not always repeated in the future. 

You are not factoring in the impacts of climate change and income inequality that the electorate is increasingly turning to government to provide leadership on. Even if 30% of Canadians remain diehard ideological Conservatives that is not likely enough to win a federal election. 

David Moscrop, a political theorist at the University of Ottawa, tweeted that “the last and only time a party has formed government with less than 35 percent of the national popular vote was John A. Macdonald in 1867 — with 34.8 percent.”

What I foresee is the Conservatives at 28 to 33% with their support heavily centered in the West weakening their ability to translate support into seats. That leaves 67 to 72% to spilt between the Liberals, NDP and "other". 

This vote beats the 1867 record, with the Liberal popular vote settling around 33 per cent.

Stephen Harper’s win over Paul Martin in 2006 was close to this level, when his Conservatives took 36.27 per cent of the popular vote to win 99 seats.

https://nationalpost.com/news/politics/election-2019/canadian-federal-election-2019-liberals-justin-trudeau-win

For the Conservatives to win, they need the vote to be split between the Liberals and the NDP while grabbing a bit of the centre.

For the NDP to win, the vote will have to be split between the Conservatives and the Liberals. Doesn't matter which takes third place. One of them has to but they can be within kissing distance of one another. 

If the NDP learns to be authentic and has realistic policy options they can rise to take 1/3rd plus of the vote which is all they need, just like the other parties. 

There is an assumption that our system will become a two party system because it is FPTP. That seems to be accepted as fact rather than theory. I can easily see the Conservatives, Liberals and NDP spliting the vote in thirds with the exception of the "other" vote. 

We are not that far from it right now. If the Conservatives drop to 30% there will no longer be a reason for voters to choose between the Liberals and NDP because only they will be able to garner enough support to win. 

Climate change and income inequality will keep the Conservatives too low to win. Climate change and income inequality will influence people to vote Liberal as the establishment choice. The failure of the Liberals to adequately address either climate change or income inequality will influence more people to vote for a different option which I hope will be the NDP presenting a Green New Deal. 

Sean in Ottawa

Pondering wrote:

JKR wrote:
 I think it's ridiculous to have this pointless debate about whether the Conservatives are likely going to become a 3rd party

There are tons of pointless threads on this forum. If I went into each of them to tell everyone that their debates on foreign affairs etc. are pointless do you think they will stop so there aren't so many boring topics on the first page? I get so tired of having to scroll endlessly to find the threads I'm interested in. People just have no consideration!

Maybe you should ask yourself why you participate in pointless threads. It's not like I dragged you in here. Maybe it isn't so pointless. Maybe you want to express your disagreement, or maybe you are a slave to your emotions and can't resist. Maybe I'm click-bait. Only you know what your motivation is for continuing to engage in a discussion that is pointless to you. 

Nobody is saying this thread is pointless becuase it is boring or uninteresting. They are saying it becuase they think it is wrong. People will skip over an uninteresting topic but one that they disagree with is going to get a response if they think it is a topic that is interesting.

It would be very interesting if the Conservatives would decline. You are getting counter arguments becuase the idea of a long term decline and potential disapearance of the party that is in first or close second place, governs most provinces, and has the greatest finanical base is ridiculous.

Hopefully this will not be a topic beaten like a dead horse when there is no evidence to even merit the discussion in the first place.

But still, people will be interested enough to tell you the idea is baloney.

Pondering

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
It would be very interesting if the Conservatives would decline. You are getting counter arguments becuase the idea of a long term decline and potential disapearance of the party that is in first or close second place, governs most provinces, and has the greatest finanical base is ridiculous.  

The P.Q. used to run Quebec, the CAQ didn't exist a few years ago. The Bloc all but vanished for years. I recall how editorials and posters alike mused about the demise of the Liberal Party. The party that has governed Canada for most of its history was declared all but dead.

The Conservative party has split into factions in very recent history and seems to win elections only as the default when the Liberals finally disgust people so much they just can't give them another term. 

Declaring something ridiculous or pointless is not a counter-argument. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
Hopefully this will not be a topic beaten like a dead horse when there is no evidence to even merit the discussion in the first place.  

Your notion that it is impossible or so improbable as to make discussion pointless is ridiculous. Calling a discussion you are participating in meritless only proves that you have a complusion to participate in discussions you consider meritless. You might want to do some introspecting about that. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
 But still, people will be interested enough to tell you the idea is baloney. 

Which yet again is not a counter-argument. If that's all they got it's like swatting flies. 

Sean in Ottawa

Pondering wrote:

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
It would be very interesting if the Conservatives would decline. You are getting counter arguments becuase the idea of a long term decline and potential disapearance of the party that is in first or close second place, governs most provinces, and has the greatest finanical base is ridiculous.  

The P.Q. used to run Quebec, the CAQ didn't exist a few years ago. The Bloc all but vanished for years. I recall how editorials and posters alike mused about the demise of the Liberal Party. The party that has governed Canada for most of its history was declared all but dead.

The Conservative party has split into factions in very recent history and seems to win elections only as the default when the Liberals finally disgust people so much they just can't give them another term. 

Declaring something ridiculous or pointless is not a counter-argument. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
Hopefully this will not be a topic beaten like a dead horse when there is no evidence to even merit the discussion in the first place.  

Your notion that it is impossible or so improbable as to make discussion pointless is ridiculous. Calling a discussion you are participating in meritless only proves that you have a complusion to participate in discussions you consider meritless. You might want to do some introspecting about that. 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
 But still, people will be interested enough to tell you the idea is baloney. 

Which yet again is not a counter-argument. If that's all they got it's like swatting flies. 

We do not care about the label.

The point is that Conservative ideology in Canada is not in decline and supported by vast amounts of money. It could change names if the brand took a hit but this is not happening now. They could take over another party and make it a Conservative party. But there is no decline that can be predicted in all seriousness. If tomorrow the Conservatives faced an epic scandal then Conservatives would either flock to the Liberals (like in BC) and make them as Conservative (Liberals who are not conservative would leave for the NDP making that party Liberal) or they would create a new one named Conservative like they did in Sask. Either way there is no break in having a Conservative party that is well funded and well supported. At the moment there is no push for either as the brand is not in decline.

At this moment Conservatives are debating the leadership but the party is not at risk in terms of the name. If it were the replacement would be almost instant.

The Liberals are in trouble as they have been for a while due to the difficulty of appealing to both right and left flanks. One bad leader and the Liberals are on life support again due to this division.

The Conservatives are not short of supporters or money any more than they have been for the last 100 years.

Again the premise of the thread is ridiculous.

JKR

Pondering wrote:

There are tons of pointless threads on this forum. If I went into each of them to tell everyone that their debates on foreign affairs etc. are pointless do you think they will stop so there aren't so many boring topics on the first page? I get so tired of having to scroll endlessly to find the threads I'm interested in. People just have no consideration!

I agree that many threads on this forum are of little interest to many people. However I think almost all of the threads on this forum, if not all, are based on opinions that are backed by at least some evidence. On the other hand, I see no evidence to back your prediction that "the Conservatives are headed toward third party status." You are the only person I can think of who believes the Conservatives are heading toward third party status. Do you know of anyone else who thinks the Conservatives are heading toward third party status? Why do you think so few, if any, think the Conservatives are heading toward third party status? Why do you think you are able to see what so few others, if any, are able to see?

Pondering

 

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The point is that Conservative ideology in Canada is not in decline and supported by vast amounts of money.

I am talking about the federal Conservative Party not ideology.

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
The Liberals are in trouble as they have been for a while due to the difficulty of appealing to both right and left flanks. One bad leader and the Liberals are on life support again due to this division.

They are in trouble because Trudeau is a bad leader but even he couldn’t lose the election. There is no right/left division within the party. The Liberals don’t even have party members anymore so they aren’t a problem. The MPs tend to do what they are told. They appeal to the left through social policy and the right through fiscal policy. 

https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/conservative-party-brand-survey-1.5411086

When asked which words people associate with the Conservative Party, the three most common terms volunteered were "old," "tradition," and "closed."

The report also found that voters associate the Conservative brand with the oil and gas industry, the military and religion, but not with diversity, equality or climate change.

(The survey deserves greater focus so I will address the non-existent evidence within later.)

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
  We do not care about the label.

Is that a royal “we”?

Sean in Ottawa wrote:
But there is no decline that can be predicted in all seriousness. Again the premise of the thread is ridiculous.

Ok boomer.

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