NDP Leadership 25

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StuartACParker wrote:

Aristotleded24 wrote:
Let's suppose that Cullen's proposal comes to fruition. Let's also say that in a particular constituency the Liberals and NDP are each fielding a candidate for joint consideration. What's to say the candidate who loses won't say, "%@[email protected]#%$ it, I'm running as an Independent anyways?"

Yep. And how well do independents who aren't incumbent MPs or hosts of highly-rated talkshows do? Even most incumbents who lose their party's nomination get defeated running as indepdenents. 

Would all the parties be able to transfer 100% of their votes to the joint candidate? Of course not. Would the consensus candidate get significantly more votes than in open competition, you bet.

 

Ask Niki Ashton if Bev Dejarlais's decision to run as an independent affected the outcome of that race.

Gaian

edited

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

Nash will apparently be in soon: http://www.hilltimes.com/2011/10/19/nash-poised-to-announce-candidacy-fo...

(Don't bother reading the article, though, unless you want to read a bizarre piece that has little to do with the headline and more to do with how little attention the Liberals are paying to the NDP's leadership race.)

takeitslowly

i agree it would be very hard to get the remaining 19 percent ignatieff supporters to vote for the NDP.

Wilf Day

StuartACParker wrote:
. . . is there anything about the specifics of Cullen's proposal that elicits that worry?

Great discussion of this very point on Newsworld a little while ago. The highlight was when Elizabeth May said it might work as a one-time-only agreement as long as the three parties agreed to implement proportional representation. Pat Martin seconded the motion. Wayne Easter wasn't buying, unfortunately. But the Liberals need PR as much as anyone, as Bob Rae certainly knows. Maybe there will be hope for Wayne Easter after reflection.

Northern Shoveler Northern Shoveler's picture

theleftyinvestor wrote:

I signed up for the BCNDP just before the leadership contest cutoff, and received a membership card in the mail along with voting instructions well in advance of the race.

I remember the voting package so I guess the card meant nothing to me so I don't remember it at all.  For years I had a PAC so I never even thought about the membership or a card.  For all I know they may have sent me one every year but it got filed the same place as all the other recurring pleas for money.

Howard

theleftyinvestor wrote:

Northern Shoveler wrote:

Howard wrote:

At the same time, the party trying to whitewash how slow it is in sending membership cards to people in Québec is a poor joke. The fact is that people expect to get their cards, especially older people, and they often don't and there are often backlogs and it is often disorganised. Membership is also an issue with provincial NDP parties but less so. I can't believe the party doesn't take the time to reflect on how badly this makes it look. 

I'm not even sure if the BC NDP still sends out membership cards if they do it is way after the fact.  During the leadership race out here the website signed up many members who instantly got a receipt acknowledging their membership in the party.  So who in Quebec are we chasing for votes? Dinosaurs that don't understand the internet or young people who likely would prefer to go on line and pay their $10 bucks and get an instantaneous membership and the right to vote?  As noted over and over ad naseum this system has led to the highest number of memberships in any province.

So if I have this right the BC NDP did too good an job in recruiting members therefore screwing over the people of Quebec but the method they used to get those high membership numbers are also an insult to Quebec voters. So lets design a weighted system that ensures those brown skinned Sikhs ion BC don't have any undue influence in a party they have joined in large numbers.  They are not Quebecois so they cannot lay claim to any discrimination in the Canadian federal context they in fact are the problem when it comes to Quebecois desires to be involved the NDP.

I signed up for the BCNDP just before the leadership contest cutoff, and received a membership card in the mail along with voting instructions well in advance of the race.

I should have been much more precise in my wording. Membership is also an issue with provincial NDP sections from time to time. I didn't want to slag the provincial sections, just note that sometimes they are slow getting out the membership cards too. I think what is needed is a revamp of how these are handed out. Someone else on the discussion board put it well in saying that what people want is some sort of confirmation that they are a member. If they order their membership online, then I think they should get a receipt that clearly indicates that they are a member or maybe even gives them a membership card to print out and keep for their own. If they apply for a membership by phone or snail mail, then something similar needs to be mailed to them. This proof of membership should have a information about when it needs to be renewed, how to renew it, etc. as well as maybe a number people can point to as their membership number. This is not super hard to do. Currently it is not done "super" well. A small investment for better membership management would make the party look more professional and could reduce costs in reminding people to renew their memberships (or enrol in PAC if it allows them to not have to worry about renewals).

ottawaobserver

They just posted jobs at NDP.ca for staff in the fundraising department at federal office to process Quebec memberships about six weeks ago.

I said this in the last thread (or maybe the one before that) but it didn't seem to pierce the threshold of consciousness amongst anyone else participating in the rather abstract aspects of this debate.

Howard

ottawaobserver wrote:

They just posted jobs at NDP.ca for staff in the fundraising department at federal office to process Quebec memberships about six weeks ago.

I said this in the last thread (or maybe the one before that) but it didn't seem to pierce the threshold of consciousness amongst anyone else participating in the rather abstract aspects of this debate.

Laughing

Life, the unive...

Stuart, your posts, as were your comments about my own world view, are full of assumptions that do not meet basic reality tests.  That's your problem.  As is your selective editing of others people's comments that expose uncomfortable truths about your own arguments.  You are arguing as if political life was in a vacuum- problem is it isn't.  So as soon as your arguments are exposed to air they fall apart, but you are still looking at them as if they are in a vacuum. And then you attack anyone who disagrees with your assumptions.

Your claim for instance that the Liberals and the NDP are interchangable and non-progressive flies in the face of just under 80 years of history - more if you go back to the Ginger Goodwin Group.

 

StuartACParker

Life, the universe, everything wrote:

Stuart, your posts, as were your comments about my own world view, are full of assumptions that do not meet basic reality tests.  That's your problem.  As is your selective editing of others people's comments that expose uncomfortable truths about your own arguments.  You are arguing as if political life was in a vacuum- problem is it isn't.  So as soon as your arguments are exposed to air they fall apart, but you are still looking at them as if they are in a vacuum. And then you attack anyone who disagrees with your assumptions.

Care to name

(a) any comment I've edited to misrepresent the intent of its author?

(b) any argument of mine that has fallen apart?

Or is this more of the insistence dressed-up as reason that I've been getting in such large portions lately?

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Your claim for instance that the Liberals and the NDP are interchangable and non-progressive flies in the face of just under 80 years of history - more if you go back to the Ginger Goodwin Group.

What a party was 30 years ago has little to do with what a party is today. But many social democrats use exactly this kind of thinking to avoid confronting what their parties have become. And people like Mike Harcourt, Tony Blair and others have relied on that form of self-deception so as to pursue mean-spirited, militaristic, right-wing policies without having to account for doing so.

And no, I don't think the NDP is as bad as the Greens or the Liberals. Hence my choice to be a New Democrat. But it is true that the NDP today is a party significantly to the right of Joe Clark's Tories or Pierre Trudeau's Liberals, never mind Ed Broadbent's NDP. The NDP contains a higher proportion of progressives than these parties but clearly not a larger enough proportion to pursue a policy agenda that is, on balance, progressive while in office.

But the kind of reasoning you're using here is akin to Republicans saying that they're the party of racial equality because they were formed for the purpose of abolising slavery.

StuartACParker

Malcolm wrote:
Ask Niki Ashton if Bev Dejarlais's decision to run as an independent affected the outcome of that race.

Tiresome Malcolm. As you know, I already addressed this issue upthread and all you’re doing here is trotting-out perfect as enemy of the good reasoning. Nobody is claiming that Cullen’s plan would perfectly pool all anti-Harper votes. What we are suggesting is that it would pool anti-Harper votes far more efficiently than the current plan of not seeking to pool these votes.

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In order to be viable, a candidate has no choice but to demonstrate significant caacity and effectiveness in Quebec.

Again, the topos of repetition from you. I heard you the first time you said this. Certainly I will agree with you that the vast majority of current members voting in the leadership race will need to buy some kind of narrative whereby their favoured candidate doesn’t lose our Quebec seats by the time the election comes around in 2015.

But this doesn’t translate to it being rational for every campaign to disproportionately spend money on financing a membership drive targeting Francophones in Québec and New Brunswick when the per-member cost of recruitment of Anglos living in the regions where they are already popular is a minute fraction of what they would spend per member getting new support in Québec.

Certainly, nobody can afford to not appear to campaign in Québec. But, at the end of the day, a haul of 8000 new Anglos versus 800 new Francophones will benefit a campaign far more in an unadulterated OMOV system. Those extra 7200 votes are enough to prevent elimination in early balloting and may be enough to push a candidate over the top at the end. And I anticipate it’s that kind of difference in terms of return on investment that we’re talking about for a candidate like Cullen. I would wager that it would cost Nathan Cullen less time and money to sign up 8000 committed Anglos in BC and Alberta than to sign up 800 committed Francophones in Québec.

And let’s remember that people you sign up through your personal and professional networks are not especially moved by other candidates’ arguments or arguments in the media until you’re eliminated in the race. There just isn’t a whole lot of “sure he’s my boss’s childhood friend and that’s why I joined but I think Saganash will play better in Québec” in a race like this.

So, Malcolm, you can keep repeating yourself but unless you offer some reasoning about the opportunity cost of signups, your assertion will continue to fail to rise to the level of argument.

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Failure to generate memberships in Quebec will lose votes everywhere else.  I'm not going to vote for a candidate who can't demonstrate capacity and effectiveness in Quebec.  Neither will you.

This, I think may be your problem. Your belief that all right-thinking New Democrats are having the same thoughts as you is a problem. I’m going to support a candidate whose policies I agree with and who demonstrates an ability to do what it takes to win. A candidate on a limited budget who chooses a profoundly inefficient signup strategy out of an excessive concern for optics isn’t going to get my vote. I certainly won’t back someone who doesn’t bother to campaign in Québec but I’m also not going to vote for somebody who can’t do math. I want somebody who heads a team that can count and knows how to use scarce resources to maximum effect. An Anglo with negligible connections and organization in Québec who pours resources into getting 60 people instead of 15 people to his Jonquière launch is not such a person.

Failing to campaign in Quebec would lose my vote. Focusing a signup drive on Francophones instead of Anglophones would also lose Cullen my vote, however. It would show that he had a sequencing problem. Shoring up Québec membership numbers is something he should do if he wins; he shouldn’t pour scarce resources into it while he’s still trying to move from the second tier to the top tier.

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In other words, even in this pure OMOV race, a Quebec membership sold is at least twice as valuable as a membership sold anywhere else

I would suggest they’d need to be about five to seven times as valuable to equalize the opportunity cost for a campaign like Cullen’s. Also, there are diminishing returns for those Québec memberships. Once you have enough memberships in a region to be able to put on an event and appear to be a contender there, the value of new members falls. Similarly, the cost of your first ten members in virgin territory as higher than all subsequent members and yet delivers no benefit at all, until you clear that minimum and get to the point where you can put  on an event demonstrating that you’re relevant in Sherbrooke or Trois Rivières or wherever. If you have 0, you’re engaged in high-cost speculation to invest on the assumption you’ll be able to hit 20.

So, I’ll accept that the value of members in Québec peaks at between 20 and 50 per region at a rate of about 2:1 but at less than 20 is 1:1 and begins to decline back to 1:1 as you go past 50, hitting that mark around 500.

But the costs are enormous unless you’re already plugged into Québec, which only Topp and Mulcair either. And Mulcair has NOTHING to prove in his home province. All Québec members for him are 1:1 members.

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The rules are set.

The particular change to the rule you want cannot be accomplished without an amendment to the constitution.

Agreed. And there is ample political and legal precedent for doing a virtual convention by mail, phone and/or internet that can take up this emergency.

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Now, you may think it is responsible or helpful for New Democrats to undermine the party on a public site.

Now you sound like Brian Topp. God forbid that people should express disagreement with the NDP on rabble or Facebook or anywhere. Clearly all people who publicly disagree with the party are enemies of the party. Because it’s well known that open, democratic debate is utterly contrary to the spirit of socialism.

Do you have a sense of what a cartoonish Stalinist you sound like saying nonsense like this?

KenS wrote:
What you called the "alleged precedent" is the closest and most comparable situation that exists.

So, all the opposing evidence from within Canada in the past 30 years are less comparable than an event that happened involving the third-tier party and a small new party in England in the early 80s?

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The Canadian examples are civic alliances that bear little resemblance to the structure of political parties.

Huh? Are you telling me COPE isn’t a party? It calls itself a party. I just attended its nomination meeting along with 1000 other people. Its name appears on the ballot and has for 40 years. How is it not a party?

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The French example is not comparable either. Although possibly a shade less uncomparable than the Canadian civic examples.

You appear to share Malcolm’s belief that declaring things with sufficient vehemence is a good substitute for argument.

Life wrote:
Should I giggle now or later over the fact that you decried an ad hominem attack and then made one two posts later?

No. You should explain how me asking you a direct question constitutes an ad hominem attack.

In Vancouver, the civic left routinely ask their supporters to vote for allied parties to their right as part of coalition agreements. The success of NDP- and labour-backed parties has been contingent on the ability to get their members to do this.

You seemed to argue that commitment to the NDP and commitment to never cooperating were the same thing. So I asked you, if the NDP wanted to cooperate, which if your commitments would win out: loyalty or refusal to cooperate?

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If I lived in another riding I might or might not vote NDP.

Thanks for answering this. I’m genuinely surprised. But thanks.

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It also makes me howl with delight, that many of the people claiming the NDP are not left enough, are also the very ones who want the NDP to move to embrace a right wing party like the Liberals. There is zero logical consistency in that. Zero. The Liberals are a right wing party filled with hypocrits, liars, cheats and enemies of progressive politics. That a few New Democrats have deluded themselves otherwise does not change this reality. In the end I prefer an enemy that is honest, not one who tries to be my friend. And as I said, I doubt that I am alone.

There is total logical consistency. It goes like this, “The NDP are a right wing party filled with hypocrites, liars, cheats and enemies of progressive politics. That a few New Democrats have deluded themselves otherwise does not change this reality. In the end I prefer an enemy that is honest, not one who tries to be my friend.” You can also freely substitute the words “Democrats,” “PQ,” “New Labour,” etc. Post-Cold War social democratic and liberal parties are not progressive

There are no elected progressive parties in Canada other than Québec Solidaire. However, there are progressive people active in the Liberals, NDP and Greens. We should really find ways of working together in these dark days. It’s my hope that my doing things like merger processes, progressive primaries and the like that we’ll mobilize on a scale sufficient to exert more influence and possibly even take over one of these sellout parties. I’m a member of the NDP because I think that it has the best chance of becoming an effective, progressive party – but I’m not going to act like the goal of the NDP becoming a progressive, governing party has already been achieved. In most provinces, New Democrats are one or the other; and in Ontario, they manage to be neither!

Northern Shoveler wrote:
Sorry but you got the wrong tree to bark up.  I fought against my party when it instituted BC Benefits and denied new services to developmentally disabled people (the same as the Liberals are rightly being condemned for today)  I also spoke out against using lawyers fees as general revenue not as a revenue source for legal aid.  Oh yeah and I ripped up my card when an Attorney General named Dosanjh said he was going to Ottawa to propose a three strikes law for pot.  

Glad to hear it, NS. I’m kind of baffled, then, by your decision to attack me for my work in opposing those very same policies.

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I still think your talking point equating the McGill club to the whole of the NDP in Quebec is a MSM sounding idea that is not born out by the facts.

How fortunate that I did not such thing, then. It was Wilf, not me, who suggested that they comprised a significant portion of the province’s total membership. All I suggested was that the signup capacities of the current crop of MPs were being vastly overstated, something I stand by. If these people were so good at signing up Francophone members, they wouldn’t have even been candidates.

KenS

StuartACParker wrote:

 

Care to name

 

(b) any argument of mine that has fallen apart? 

Probably not on the surface, because all one has to do is be consistent, and it has not fallen apart.

But I know you maintain the facade by serious cherry picking and not addressing arguments put to you.

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