NDP leadership 20

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MegB
NDP leadership 20

Continuing from here.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

peterjcassidy wrote:

Those goals work well together and would be some of the best ways to carry on Jacks legacy. The NDP MPs in Quebec, with the help of their staff in the constituency office and in Ottawa (on a volunteer basis, of course) should start with a database of those who worked, donated or took a sign for them in the May 2011 election.  In most ridings that may only be a few hundred people ,but in a fair number of ridings over a thousand  Beore Xmas every single one of those persons should recieve a personal letter from their new MP thanking them for getting her elected,  a copy of Jacks letter and an invite to take part in carrying on the legacy.  Soon after that thank you letter, every single one of those persons should recieve a persoanl phone call from their new MP  thanking them for their support and an invite to carry on the legacy . In the new year,  every single one of those people should recieve a letter followed  by a phone call to come to a special open public General Meeting of the riding to elect a riding executive and to select delegates to the leadership convention.

In ridings where such data exists, certainly.  But we also won ridings where we have no campaign at all, and where the only work done in the riding was collecting sinatures on nomination papers.  OTOH, that's still 100+ people for initial contact.

Quote:

Of course the NDP MPs (and their staff) shoudl be active in the riding they represent,, helping constituents with their problems,attending community events, walking picket lines and a wide range of meet and greets. In every riding there will be dozens of groups, labour unions, environmental groups anti-poverty activists, farmers, women, GBLTQ, members of city and town council, school boards,  Knights of Columbus, Rotary club,  who would be delighted to meet with their newly elected representative and discuss shared values and concerns.    Much of this work has to be carried out in a non-partisan way,you serve all the constituents regardless of who they voted for in the last election or who they may vote for in the next election., but there will be ample opporuntiy to do more partisan party-oriented outreach 

One of the problems for MPs is urban areas is that very little an MP does will get media attention.  In smaller communities, however, merely attending some events can get a mention in the local weekly.  (And for those who pooh-pooh local weeklies, they actually have better reader penetration than most dailies because the paper stays around for a week and whole thing actually gets read by everyone in the household.)  In that respect, the MPs elected in more rural ridings may actually have an easier time of it.

Another opportunity is that there will be some experienced political operatives who may want to come over now that the NDP is a player in Quebec.  Care must be taken, of course, but these people may come with broad networks which can be turned into members.

Quote:

Every NDP Quebec MP should have a riding associaton with at leatd 300 members and a core of rding activists by the time the vote for leader comes up. That riding asociation and core of activists should grow and be able to  fund and carry out a successful re-elecion bid.  Add the work carried out by the central party,the leadership campaigns and  there should easily be over 20,000 members of the NDP/NPD in Quegbc able to vote for leader and a thousand Quebec delegates at the leadership convention. 

If every one of the 59 MPs sells an average of 300 memberships plus the existing members, that's almost 20,000 - plus whatever the campaigns sell and what work gets done in the other 16 seats.  At 20-25,000 members, even if the Quebec membership is slightly less than 25%, we are in the ballpark where anyone trying to make an issue of it will have trouble being taken seriously.

ottawaobserver

Howard made some interesting observations /predictions about the race in the previous thread. I'm going to disagree with him about a few of them (though I'm working from memory).

I think by holding off, Mulcair knows that he has to impress even more coming out of the gate. I know he's been phoning across the country, and has been picking up more support than people might think. More than some people might think, anyway. My understanding is that Thursday the 13th is blocked off as the likely announcement date. It hasn't been confirmed yet, because you don't give that much lead time to your opponents (see: Ignatieff, M.), and you never know who Brian Topp could line up as an endorser for that morning, if you give him that much lead time. Mulcair respects his strategic acumen enough to know that much.

And why wouldn't Topp have a great deal of Quebec support? Mulcair says he hasn't been in Quebec much in the last five years, but he was a part of building the party there for a decade before Mulcair arrived on the scene. Six of one, half dozen of the other. I believe they will be fairly evenly matched, and that there will be supporters of other candidates from the province - even from the Quebec caucus.

People who don't know Paul Dewar have the tendency to underestimate him. This is a mistake some in the federal party will not make again, though. After having Ed Broadbent enter the race against him for the Ottawa Centre nomination in 2004 (Dewar stayed in, to his credit, and comported himself with dignity), he announced his intention to run again in 2006 when Ed stepped down to take care of Lucille in her final days. So, they tried to run Jamey Heath against him, and tested Alex Munter's name in a local poll as well. Dewar maintained his composure, sold his memberships, worked the phones, and bested Jamey (who still won't shake his hand in public), all without saying a mean word about anyone. He went on to win the riding by doing well in his mother's old base of the west end ... a base that Heath could never have laid claim to in a million years. Dewar was reelected for a third time in May with 52% of the vote. He owns the riding now.

He also has turned into the peacemaker of the caucus, and is a fantastic grassroots community-based MP just like his mother would have wanted. His campaign has picked up a lot of the federal party's best organizers, who know his reputation from Ottawa, and it's no surprise that his announcement looked just like a Jack Layton event. Of all the candidates, he connects with people the best - save perhaps for Robert Chisholm.

The Saganash campaign is having an impact in places we don't see down south, but needs to convert that excitement and sense of pride into real live voting members when it counts.

I am trying, but I still do not get the point of the Ashton campaign beyond ad feminem characteristics (young, female, from the prairies). Also, I don't really know Cullen, but used to find him snarky in his first term, though I think he's mellowed a lot. It's not that I don't want to see a strong westerner in the race, but neither of them are doing it for me to this stage, and we either have some big gaps in caucus at the moment (in the prairies) or a lot of newbies (in BC). God the timing of this thing sucks. Same problem with the women. They're either too young, too inexperienced, would have to basically give up having children at all to run at this moment in time, or are at an age where asking another 10 years of them is asking a lot. Rotten rotten timing.

Whoever here said they couldn't wait for this period of getting out of the starting gates to be over, I agree with. It's the phony war before the genuine contest of ideas and passion. That's the part I'm looking forward to.

nicky

Malcolm, youvarevarguing against a point I never made and calling it "daft" to boot.

I never said that no candidate except Mulcair has an interest in signing up new Quebec members. AN and OO have both recognized that my point is that they have little to gain in a GENERAL Quebec membership drive because the general support fort for Mulcair in Quebec is so strong.

I will make it simple. In my riding of Toronto Centre, Rosedale is wasteland for the NDP. On election day we pull a few identified supporters in Rosedale but we certainly do not go to every door rousing likely opponents to go and vote. Do you understand now.

As for you Chicken Little comment let me remind you there is another bird in the aviry called the ostrich. I appreciate things may change but if they do not the party may be met with this situation:

Mulcair is vastly more populat than Topp in Quebec. Notwithstanding backing the NDP more strongly than any other province it has only a tiny vote in the leadership. Topp wins narrowly over Mulcair. the media and most Quebecers attribute this to an unfair playing field as well as Topp being the establishment candidate. The message Quebec gets, to quote Phil Edmonston, is "Shut up and look pretty."

This may well happen if the vote were now. I recognize and hope that it might change. But it will not change by itself. Unless something extraordinary happens I personally do not think Quebec will exceed 10 per cent. I don't think it it is alarmist or "destructive" to point this out. To the contrary I think it is irresponsible not to address it. Further I don't think I deserve your invective for raising this concern.

If your abuse continues I may have to move on to Australia.

AnonymousMouse

nicky wrote:
If your abuse continues I may have to move on to Australia.

According to this nifty tool the furthest point on the planet from Saskatchewan is actually the "French Southern & Antarctic Islands".

Good luck in you travels, nicky!

http://www.antipodemap.com/

AnonymousMouse

KenS wrote:
But none of that is the federal party doing membership drives. Those lesser things is not what is being asked for here. My point stands: the federal party does not do this directly [or any other on the ground organizational development work.

As I went on to say in my next sentence, the federal party has done membership drives in Quebec through the Quebec Section office in Montreal and has been solely responsible for memberships in Quebec for a long time.

None of that bears directly on my point, though, which was that given that we now have 59 MPs from Quebec and no prospect of a provincial party, the federal party will obviously have to mount a membership operation in Quebec similar to what we have in other provinces, and that if there were any non-leadership event generating as much interest in NDP membership in Quebec as we think there is right now, then the federal party would be jumping at the opportunity to use this time to kickstart that effort.

KenS wrote:
But you promote this possibility repeatedly along with the false histrionics that it would only and has only not happened because of the interests of particular campaigns.

Nothing I've written has been false, nor has anything I've written been remotely histrionic.

I also did not write that a membership drive has "only not happened because of the INTERESTS of PARTICULAR campaigns".

I wrote:

AnonymousMouse wrote:
If it were some other event, not a leadership race, that were generating this much interest in Quebec for becoming a member of the NDP, the federal party, knowing we need to massively build our organizational capacity there over the next four years, would be jumping at the opportunity. The belief that it would help certain leadership candidates is the only reason this even being discussed--otherwise it would be under way already. But choosing not to do a membership drive, when leadership aside we need to start building organization in Quebec, is also a choice and it also benefits certain candidates.

That remark is entirely accurate. Note that what I actually wrote was that it is "the belief that it would HELP certain leadership candidates" that is standing in the way of a membership drive. In other words, it's not that it is against the interest of some campaigns, but rather the idea that it would give an unfair advantage to some campaigns that is standing in the way of a membership drive. My point is that that judgement is based on the assumption that neutrality in this case would be doing whatever has been done in the past during leadership races, but that what qualifies as neutrality should be based more on what would be done if all leadership interests were ignored.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

nicky wrote:
I never said that no candidate except Mulcair has an interest in signing up new Quebec members.

Actually that's pretty close to exactly what I read.

Quote:
I appreciate things may change but if they do not the party may be met with this situation: Mulcair is vastly more populat than Topp in Quebec. Notwithstanding backing the NDP more strongly than any other province it has only a tiny vote in the leadership. Topp wins narrowly over Mulcair. the media and most Quebecers attribute this to an unfair playing field as well as Topp being the establishment candidate. The message Quebec gets, to quote Phil Edmonston, is "Shut up and look pretty." This may well happen if the vote were now. I recognize and hope that it might change. But it will not change by itself. Unless something extraordinary happens I personally do not think Quebec will exceed 10 per cent. I don't think it it is alarmist or "destructive" to point this out. To the contrary I think it is irresponsible not to address it. Further I don't think I deserve your invective for raising this concern. If your abuse continues I may have to move on to Australia.

Any number of things are possible, Nicky.  The prospect that the Quebec membership will not approach ~25% of the membership is possible - if every single leadership campaign and every single Quebec MP turns out to be pretty much useless.  IOW, the possibility is remote at best.  If you wish to obsess over remote possibilities, you might want to consider doing it in ways that aren't destructive to the party.

Mulcair is vastly more popular in Quebec than Topp, who is largely unknown right now.  If you polled in Plunkett, Saskatchewan right now, Mulcair is probably more popular than Topp since they are significantly more likely to have heard of Mulcair.  Given that Topp is a francophone from Montreal, he's reasonably well-placed to make some inroads in Quebec against an anglophone born in Ottawa.

In general, I find that reciting corporate media naratives is rarely in the best interests of the NDP.  This manufactured crisis of what-ifs is nothing more than media spin.  It's like the "what if the affiliate vote is decisive" meme in the last leadership race.

At no point has anyone suggested that the Quebec membership situation will change "by itself. I've drawn out at length how MPs and leadership candidates will grow the Quebec membership.  You've written that off with the bald assertion that leadership campaigns (apart from Mulcair's and presumably Saganash's) won't priorize Quebec memberships.  Sorry, Nicky, but that assertion simply doesnt hold water since a weak showing in Quebec will be fatal to any campaign.

In addition, Ken has pointed out the limited capacity of the federal office to conduct membership drives on their own.  We have limited lists of potential members for most constituencies, so the strength of the federal office (an existing phone bank) will be of limited use.  It will be boots on the ground in Quebec and the MPs and the leadership campaigns are best suited to the effort that's required.

I hear New Zealand is very nice - though avoid Christchurch where they are still experiencing aftershocks.

 

Howard

Those are interesting points Oo. Anyone that won't shake Paul Dewar's hand in public has lost my respect. Dewar is widely acknowledged as a good man, even among those who aren't a fan of his politics or style. He also won that nomination fair and square, so anyone that would assert something to the contrary is trying to rewrite history.

Cullen is better known to people out West. He is a young man with a lot of smarts and some charisma (which helps to explain his improving electoral margins in a tough riding). He is very ambitious and given the weakness of his French at this point (and the lack of endorsements) I'm guessing this run is more about building profile and maybe putting across a vision of where he thinks the party should be going, rather than winning. When Cullen was first elected, he was part of a small caucus and thus got plumb choices for critic portfolios (Environment), now there is more competition and his responsibilities have been reduced. This run may be designed to get his career to the next level.

Ashton is a bit like Cullen but younger, with political pedigree (like Dewar), and as a speaker a bit more militant, radical. She too is very ambitious. As she was very young when first elected, the media has questioned her naïveté. She is clever, intelligent, and hardworking; but if she gets in the race, and wants to win, it will have to do so by running on a "renewal" plank and that requires new ideas.

ETA: Mulcair has a big advantage in this race (no not name recognition but that is HUGE) and that is that he can largely run on his communications skills. With the exception of Brian Topp's excellent writing abilities, Mulcair can beat all of his rivals in French and English on any other communications test. This allows him to avoid making a lot of policy statements, and thus their attendant risk, and just focus on selling his ability to communicate. As Topp has laid out some policy ideas, he can always criticise Mulcair for running a flat campaign if Mulcair doesn't release any ideas of his own, and I expect as much from a good strategist like Topp.

AnonymousMouse

Malcolm wrote:

Any number of things are possible, Nicky.  The prospect that the Quebec membership will not approach ~25% of the membership is possible - if every single leadership campaign and every single Quebec MP turns out to be pretty much useless.  IOW, the possibility is remote at best. 

Peter Julian said he is confident that membership in Quebec will be 15,000 by the end of the leadership race. That was his number, not one he was prompted with.

Assuming even 10% membership growth in the rest of the country, that would give Quebec 13.8% of total membership compared to 25% of the population, 36% of our voters and 57% of our seats.

If Peter Julian says he's "confident"--much weaker than only a remote possibility otherwise--of 15,000, then I think there's more than a "remote possibility" that it won't be nearly double that.

Malcolm wrote:

In general, I find that reciting corporate media naratives is rarely in the best interests of the NDP.

I heard this issue raised well before it became prominent in the media.

Malcolm wrote:
In addition, Ken has pointed out the limited capacity of the federal office to conduct membership drives on their own. We have limited lists of potential members for most constituencies, so the strength of the federal office (an existing phone bank) will be of limited use.

I think both you and KenS underestimate how many potential leads are available for a centralized phonebank, but putting that aside, if that's the limitation, obviously the party is not going to pay phoners to sit around to do nothing, but let's make sure we can call what leads are available and/or employ any other other resources the party has access to but that leadership campaigns do not. Let's make sure that the belief that it's unfair to have a membership drive in Quebec because it might benefit one/some candidate(s) doesn't prevent us from taking advantage of every opportunity to grow our membership.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

A top down membership drive using phone banks in Ottawa (or eve in Montreal) will not be as effective as network based membership drives from MPs and leadership candidates.

And Peter Julian actually referred to the fact that in the mid 80s (when we were NOT the official opposition and when we did NOT have any seats in Quebec and when we were NOT in the midst of a leadership race) we had 15,000 members.  I certainly did not interpret his remark as a predicted ceiling for the number of memberships we could raise.

Surely if we managed to get 15,000 when we are a third party with no Quebec MPs and no compelling reason for people to join, we can expect to do at least a little bit better today.

AnonymousMouse

Malcolm wrote:

A top down membership drive using phone banks in Ottawa (or eve in Montreal) will not be as effective as network based membership drives from MPs and leadership candidates.

It's not either/or, and I'm even not suggesting that that has to be the approach. The point is that the party has access to leads the leadership candidates don't have and resources the ridings/MPs don't have.

I agree that Julian wasn't putting a ceiling on what might be achieved, but saying he's only "confident" that we'll get to 15,000 memberships (and I use the word "omly" as a cmparison bewteen "confident" and "not remotely possible we won't") that is a clear indication to me that he is not confident of 25,000-30,000. Those kinds of numbers are the absolute high end of the very well informed estimates I've heard of how many membership sales we should hope to achieve.

As for our membership in the 1980's, that was an incremental process that took place over many years; we have four months to sell memberships before the cut off. There are 10,000 members in Alberta. Of course we can do better than that in Quebec. The question is how much we can do in the next four months.

The answer to all of these questions is "we don't know". So lets not take anything for granted or pass up any opportunity to expand our membership.

KenS

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I also did not write that a membership drive has "only not happened because of the INTERESTS of PARTICULAR campaigns".

I wrote:

Quote:
If it were some other event, not a leadership race, that were generating this much interest in Quebec for becoming a member of the NDP, the federal party, knowing we need to massively build our organizational capacity there over the next four years, would be jumping at the opportunity. The belief that it would help certain leadership candidates is the only reason this even being discussed--otherwise it would be under way already. But choosing not to do a membership drive, when leadership aside we need to start building organization in Quebec, is also a choice and it also benefits certain candidates.
 

KenS

1. The federal party does not do many, many on the ground organizing things that would be very much in its interestm which it could pull the resources together for if it chose, and which many of us think are not just good, but vitally necessary. [Hence long running attempts to get the federaly party to constitutionaly seperate from the provincial sections.]

2. A plea that the number of memberships in Quebec is a markedly un-level playing field, and the situation will stay that way without a party-run membership drive, sounds like it would be a sufficiently compelling reason for the party to strongly consider a one-off of what it would not do left to its own momentum.

3. Tom Mulcair raised the point once early on. If he does not raise it again, there is no effective possibility of this happening.

4. IF Tom Mulcair were to make such a request, then it would be discussed. And if he did, then yes, the fact that it would not be in the strategic interest of the Topp campaign would come into play. [Nor would it be in the selfish strategic interest of the others, Saganash included probably... which would render it dead in the water.]

One person is making the argument that this is irrelevant. That it is very simple: the benefits of a party-run membership drive are so compelling and are so much what would normally be done, that it is only not happening because one or more leadership campaigns do not want it to happen.

KenS

Subsidiary point:

I can see many reasons why the Mulcair campaign would not see the benefits to itself that Tom Mulciar initialy saw in a party-run Quebec membership campaign.

Good to see that detail on Paul Dewar.

And it would be nice to see more of that sort of thing.

Very much agreed that Robert Chisholm is very strong working a room. Like Tom Mulcair, he has been there a lot. He's also a very good communicator [in English].

While I remain open, and know that people can develop fast on those fronts, Brian Topp just does not have the expereience to pull off that kind of performance now. Since I have seen people change very fast once given the opportunity [Robert Chisholm for one], I know it is possible for Brian Topp. And I am impressed that people like Libby Davies have the confidence that Brian Topp can pull it off. But I am still waiting to see.

But you have to throw into the hopper that the bulk of the membership is going to vote without ever seeing the candidates in the flesh.... let alone see them in the kind of proxomity where Mulcair and Chisholm really shine.

KenS

Howard made the point that even if Cullen is wholy in this to win, it is also true that he could really use raising his profile and clout within the caucus and party.

He is also young enough to have other cracks at the leadership.

Robert Chisholm is not that young, but I think the same incentive is there for him: he has a lot to gain just from making a good showing and being out there. Even had Jack lived, his past experience only got him further in the pecking order than other rookies. Under a new leader, his role within caucus was more uncertain.

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

ottawaobserver wrote:

Of all the candidates, (Dewar) connects with people the best - save perhaps for Robert Chisholm.

ottawaobserver wrote:

Also, I don't really know Cullen, but used to find him snarky in his first term, though I think he's mellowed a lot.

Those who do know Cullen react to him much in the way you describe Dewar, though. For what it's worth, I would definitely put him right up with Dewar and Chisholm in terms of connecting with people. I have never seen the 'snarky' side.

dacckon dacckon's picture
Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

nicky wrote:

Mulcair is vastly more popular than Topp in Quebec. Notwithstanding backing the NDP more strongly than any other province it has only a tiny vote in the leadership. Topp wins narrowly over Mulcair. the media and most Quebecers attribute this to an unfair playing field as well as Topp being the establishment candidate.

This is the foundation of your argument and I believe it is false.  I think you attribute too much pettiness to Quebec voters.  I just don't get how you can say people in Quebec will be pissed off if the NDP elected Topp, a Quebecois, as leader.  That makes no sense.  We have three candidates from Quebec so far and that is super more would be better.  The idea that Quebec voters will think they are getting screwed when about half the candidates and both the front runners are from Quebec is absurd talk that should only be coming out of the mouths of separatists looking for division where none exists.

I will say it again if voters in Quebec want to have an influence on the NDP then they should buy a membership and get active just like in every other region.  Of course weighted voting is rightly off the table because it is such a bad long term strategy.  Every riding in and around Burnaby has more members than the four PEI ridings combined.  So some think it is a good idea to tell a thousand or two thousand members your votes are equal to 200 PEI members who are so in touch with the people that they polled 3% in the last provincial election and could not even find 28 candidates to run a full slate.  Is that the great expertise we want to give weight to in the party?

nicky

If Quebec thinks it had a fair say in the leadership that is one thing. it is quite another if Quebec only has a sliver of influence in the selection notwithstanding voting massively for the NDP.
I have set out my NDP credentials elsewhere. You can accuse me of treason if you want but for me it is antithetical to patriotism to pretend that problems do not exist.

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

nicky wrote:

If Quebec thinks it had a fair say in the leadership that is one thing. it is quite another if Quebec only has a sliver of influence in the selection notwithstanding voting massively for the NDP. I have set out my NDP credentials elsewhere. You can accuse me of treason if you want but for me it is antithetical to patriotism to pretend that problems do not exist.

Gee I guess that was your passive post.  Please post the quote where anyone including me has accused you of treason. 

To me patriotism is the refuge of scoundrels and to be clear I never called you either a patriot or a traitor.

Gaian

nicky wrote:
If Quebec thinks it had a fair say in the leadership that is one thing. it is quite another if Quebec only has a sliver of influence in the selection notwithstanding voting massively for the NDP.
I have set out my NDP credentials elsewhere. You can accuse me of treason if you want but for me it is antithetical to patriotism to pretend that problems do not exist.

As you see, Nicky, one must never provide the slightest excuse for shit-disturbances. Never explain, never complain...the old rule of the rulers.

But I do hope that people who are into denial about your thesis could provide some kind of basis for their thinking, some inkling that it is based on current Quebec realities...like the fullout attack on public broadcasting there by Quebecor's Pierre Karl Peladeau, some being sagely considered in committee with a milquetoast defence by a couple of new New Democrats.

Peladeau's minions can put the work at the late News of the World to shame.

ottawaobserver

The polls say Mulcair is ahead in Quebec right now, but I don't believe Mulcair is necessarily more popular amongst the current Quebec party membership than any other candidate. To me that's a proposition that has yet to be tested frankly. And I'm not sure which candidate would have the greatest growth potential in the province, either, whether through membership sales, or persuading existing members. Again, that's something that only time will tell.

I'm inclined to find favour with Paul Wells' argument to Chantal Hebert: that if Quebec is underrepresented in decisions about the future of Canadian politics, it's at least in part because of its own decision to withdraw from them for so long. If Quebeckers want a say in the leadership of the Federal NDP, they can have a significant one by joining the party. If they don't, it's not really clear whose fault that is, or whose responsibility it is to make up for that if at all. With all due respect to Mr. Edmonston, who was a gadfly and top-flight leaker during the term he sat in our federal caucus, he has been even less present amongst the ranks of the NDP in Quebec than either Mulcair or Topp since 1993.

IP, my only exposure to Cullen has been watching Question Period on television, and I found him trying to imitate the Liberals' sneering, faux-outrage tone a lot in his first term. That's what turned me off. Later on I found he dropped that, which improved his presentation. I've rarely seen him smile, though, so I don't really get the charisma thing from him.

Ashton's "pedigree" is not her long suit, if you ask me, so I wouldn't be playing it in her shoes.

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

ottawaobserver wrote:

IP, my only exposure to Cullen has been watching Question Period on television, and I found him trying to imitate the Liberals' sneering, faux-outrage tone a lot in his first term. That's what turned me off. Later on I found he dropped that, which improved his presentation. I've rarely seen him smile, though, so I don't really get the charisma thing from him.

Wow, seriously? I've rarely seen him not smiling. I'm very curious to see whether you still maintain these impressions after you meet him, because they seem way off base.

Then again, it seems my impressions of Dewar are equally off-base, based on similarly superficial observations. I look forward to meeting him in person this weekend to have those misconceptions corrected.

ottawaobserver

Look at the interview video on Cullen's website, IP. I don't recall him smiling anywhere in the whole thing.

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

ottawaobserver wrote:

Look at the interview video on Cullen's website, IP. I don't recall him smiling anywhere in the whole thing.

When I said I'd rarely seen him not smiling, I meant in person.

I suspect in the video he was trying to appear Serious and Prime Ministerial--probably not a bad strategy if you're under forty.

infracaninophile infracaninophile's picture

This link was posted before, but it shows Nathan Cullen in a less Serious vein:

[url]http://www.cpac.ca/forms/index.asp?dsp=template&act=view3&pagetype=vod&h...

 

He certainly presents an engaging and attractive persona.

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

dacckon wrote:

Something from the Globe and Mail which contains an lazy author who has just taken snippets from other news articles.

So freaking lazy. This other G&M piece beautifully demonstrates just how seriously we should ever take Lysiane Gagnon.

KenS

That link just takes you to the Hill Times home page, and I dont see the article like you seem to have seen.

dacckon dacckon's picture

An interesting blog post

Something from the Globe and Mail which contains an lazy author who has just taken snippets from other news articles.

More mysterious new democrat insiders, and the elite juggernautz. 

dacckon dacckon's picture

Hmm I've noticed that happening with some of my links.

http://ndpldr.punditsguide.ca/ Its the one about Topp's leadership bid.

ottawaobserver

Idealistic Pragmatist wrote:

dacckon wrote:

Something from the Globe and Mail which contains an lazy author who has just taken snippets from other news articles.

So freaking lazy. This other G&M piece beautifully demonstrates just how seriously we should ever take Lysiane Gagnon.

Thanks for that timely reminder, IP. Mme Gagnon has been phoning it in for at least the last 10 years.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

ottawaobserver wrote:

Ashton's "pedigree" is not her long suit, if you ask me, so I wouldn't be playing it in her shoes.

 

I'm not aware that Niki Ashton has been playing her pedigree.  While she cannot deny that her father is a senior minister in the Manitoba government, I haven't seen her make anything of it in the lead up to a potential leadership announcement.  Would someone have her ban Steve from campaign events?

janfromthebruce

ah geez, I'm seeing people I like on here take wee swipes at each other. We let's be loving and oh, I so want Jack back - sign. 

ottawaobserver

Malcolm wrote:

ottawaobserver wrote:

Ashton's "pedigree" is not her long suit, if you ask me, so I wouldn't be playing it in her shoes.

I'm not aware that Niki Ashton has been playing her pedigree.  While she cannot deny that her father is a senior minister in the Manitoba government, I haven't seen her make anything of it in the lead up to a potential leadership announcement.

I didn't say she had been, or would be. Was just reacting to what another poster said about her characteristics.

nicky

I remember the Lysiane Gagnon piece predicting nothing would change in Quebec. Reading it again it is hard to count the number of things she got wrong.
It reminds me of a Dashiell Hammett story where his character is reading an advertisement about " genuine pre-war whiskey"' . The next sentence begins "As I was counting the number of lies in that sign ... "

Wilf Day

Not much comment here on Boulerice endorsing Topp:
http://www.thestar.com/news/canada/politics/article/1065093--quebec-mp-backs-topp-to-lead-ndp

Has anyone commented here? - other than nicky saying "I am presently on the shores of the Black Sea trying to assimilate why Boulerice . . . would prefer Topp to Mulcair."

To me, this is Topp's most surprising prize to date. Boulerice has been a leader of the Quebec NPD, for several years, and I would have expected him to either support Mulcair or stay neutral.

Howard

Boulerice signed the petition supporting the Canadian boat to Gaza, he is a sovereigntist, and hard left. Maybe these traits don't mesh as well with Mulcair the ardent federalist, less pro-Palestinian, soft left.

Wilf Day

Howard wrote:

Boulerice signed the petition supporting the Canadian boat to Gaza, he is a sovereigntist, and hard left. Maybe these traits don't mesh as well with Mulcair the ardent federalist, less pro-Palestinian, soft left.

That's pretty wild speculation. Would someone from Montreal please tell us if Boulerice is considered hard left? Mulcair and Duceppe had excellent rapport, and of course some Mulcair supporters and some Topp supporters voted Yes in 1995 -- half of Quebec did. And I doubt anyone in Quebec chooses a leadership contender based on Middle Eastern policy.

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

Wilf Day wrote:

And I doubt anyone in Quebec chooses a leadership contender based on Middle Eastern policy.

Just another social democrat downplaying the NDP's hard right turn into D2P ideology.  Canada has been at war now for over a decade and we are now fighting on multiple fronts but no party in the HoC wants to talk about it.  I find it disgusting and shameful that people are being murdered in my name and every party in the House is so busy trying to get elected on domestic issues that they don't even debate it.  Ready Aye Ready was bad policy when Ginger and J.S. opposed it and it has not gotten any better in a hundred years.  As for what issues Quebec NDP voters and future members are going to bring to the table is entirely for them to decide as members of riding associations.  I look forward to reading the resolutions from Quebec for the next policy convention.  Then I will have an idea about what the NDP in Quebec stands for.  lMO this is about democracy and likeminded people joining a party to bring forward their issues and concerns. It is not about people from other parts of Canada presuming they know what is important to left wing activists in any region of the country. 

I think that the Mulcair supporters on this board should stop being surprised that Topp, who has been involved in the Quebec NDP since the 80's, has a lot of support within the party in Quebec.  The Quebec breakdown is very interesting because so far it shows that even in Quebec Mulcair will be given a run for his money in the leadership and it is unclear who will end up with the most support.  That is before the membership in Quebec starts to rise exponentially. Who the new members will support is anyones guess.

Bärlüer

Wilf Day wrote:
Howard wrote:

Boulerice signed the petition supporting the Canadian boat to Gaza, he is a sovereigntist, and hard left. Maybe these traits don't mesh as well with Mulcair the ardent federalist, less pro-Palestinian, soft left.

That's pretty wild speculation. Would someone from Montreal please tell us if Boulerice is considered hard left? Mulcair and Duceppe had excellent rapport, and of course some Mulcair supporters and some Topp supporters voted Yes in 1995 -- half of Quebec did. And I doubt anyone in Quebec chooses a leadership contender based on Middle Eastern policy.

Well, I don't know if he's "hard left", but he's a thoroughly solid progressive. He was actively involved in Québec solidaire and ran as a UFP candidate (UFP = Union des forces progressistes, one of the "constituent units" of Québec solidaire). He worked for the SCFP (CUPE), doing PR work, before his election as a MP. I'd say he's one of the better-known MPs in Québec.

His announcing his support for Topp before Mulcair officially launched his campaign seems to me like another "coup" for the Topp camp / bitter news for the Mulcair camp.

On a side note: I've noticed that there's been some amount of hand-wringing around these parts about Topp's alleged "third-way-ish-ism", mostly on account of his work in the Romanow government, the contents of some of his articles and his involvement in the Liberal-NDP talks. What's been a source of amusement for me, though, is to see this sort of criticism accompanied by a statement expressing preference for Mulcair over Topp on the grounds that the former is somehow more progressive than the latter. Someone who has been ensconced in the machine of the Quebec Liberal Party for 13 years tends not to hold especially progressive views...

ottawaobserver

This seems like a good time to post Brian Topp's essay on the Occupy protests from this morning's Globe and Mail:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/second-reading/brian-topp/o...

duncan cameron

Nice to see Brian citing CCPA reports in his blog post.

KenS

 

Wilf Day wrote:

And I doubt anyone in Quebec chooses a leadership contender based on Middle Eastern policy.

 

Northern Shoveler wrote:

Just another social democrat downplaying the NDP's hard right turn into D2P ideology.

 

Your larger point stands, and is the more central one.

But Wilf's statement is really just an empirical one. As such, if you say literally 'anyone', then that is not true. And it quite likely makes a difference to Boulerice. But it still stands as a general statement.

Gonzaga

Regarding Middle Eastern policy, I would say concern is pretty high in Quebec.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

ottawaobserver wrote:

This seems like a good time to post Brian Topp's essay on the Occupy protests from this morning's Globe and Mail:

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/second-reading/brian-topp/o...

Excellent. I hope he goes further next time.

Howard

Wilf Day wrote:
Howard wrote:

Boulerice signed the petition supporting the Canadian boat to Gaza, he is a sovereigntist, and hard left. Maybe these traits don't mesh as well with Mulcair the ardent federalist, less pro-Palestinian, soft left.

That's pretty wild speculation. Would someone from Montreal please tell us if Boulerice is considered hard left? Mulcair and Duceppe had excellent rapport, and of course some Mulcair supporters and some Topp supporters voted Yes in 1995 -- half of Quebec did. And I doubt anyone in Quebec chooses a leadership contender based on Middle Eastern policy.

Lol, I didn't expect "hard left" to arouse controversy. All I meant is "solidly progressive" or "likely to the left of Mulcair."

Wilf Day

Northern Shoveler wrote:

Wilf Day wrote:

And I doubt anyone in Quebec chooses a leadership contender based on Middle Eastern policy.

Canada has been at war now for over a decade and we are now fighting on multiple fronts but no party in the HoC wants to talk about it.

Afghanistan is not in the Middle East. I was talking about Palestine/Israel. The support for the Taliban in the Pashtun areas of Pakistan (which also provide much of the leadership of their armed forces) arises from the decades-old stalemate in Kashmir and the long, complex history of the Pashtuns, not from the Middle East. (For a one-line perspective on the Pashtuns, consider the line favoured by the great Khan Abdul Ghaffar Khan: "I am a Pashtun for six thousand years, a Muslim for 1,400 years, and a Pakistani for 27 years.")

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

It may be your opinion that the Afghan war and the Palestine occupation are not related.  I disagree.

Your petty middle east comment is like saying that Honduras is not in South America so it has nothing to do with Columbia and Argentina and the empires involvement in those countries. 

Wilf Day

Northern Shoveler wrote:

It may be your opinion that the Afghan war and the Palestine occupation are not related.  I disagree.

You sound unaware that the occupation of Kashmir has caused far more deaths and has continued for more years than the occupation of Palestine (assuming the "occupation" dates from 1967, not 1948). I don't blame you, if you get your information from the mainstream media.

Lara34

Here is the latest from the Montreal Gazette - seems the writer (mainstream media in general) needs to do a bit of fact checking...  for instance characterizing the date for the leadership election as a "win" for Mulcair, and missing the OMOV process altogether: "Moreover, when the NDP was co-founded by the Canadian Labour Congress in 1961, it was established that the trade unions would have a weighted 25 per cent of a leadership vote... Mulcair has railed at the unfairness of this, but there’s nothing to be done about it..." Um. Hello?  

The one interesting point he makes is that if nothing else, campaigning against Mulcair, we'll see if Brian Topp "can take a punch".

Link: http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/needs+Mulcair+hard/5535171/story.html#ixzz1aXHB9kga

M. Spector M. Spector's picture

Why Libby Davies is supporting Brian Topp:

He's the only declared candidate capable of stopping Thomas Mulcair.

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