NDP Leadership 51

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KenS
NDP Leadership 51

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KenS

Here is the entire Mulcair plan on cap and trade. I only left out a couple peripheral additions he has made to soften a couple of the political edges- not the core political sensititivities.

Mulcair backgrounder wrote:

Cap climate change pollution "upstream" where fossil fuels and emission sources are produced rather than "downstream" where they are used.

Include all major emission sources rather than only the 700 largest emitters regulated by current legislation.

This is the essential contrast between the government's very limited plan, and the NDP's serious plan to bring in carbon pricing.

Mulcair backgrounder wrote:

Use revenue generated by a cap and trade system to help families reduce their energy use and lower their overall energy costs.

Remediate environmental damage caused by polluting industries and enforce existing regulation within federal jurisdiction.

These being major elements of the expenditure side of the NDP package. Global experience is that carbon pricing alone does little. What works is carbon pricing [stick/revenues] plus major expenditure programs [carrot/expenditures]. Because there was no new money for the latter is why the Dion Liberal 'revenue neutral' program pinched from the Greens was just posturing.

Mulcair left out entirely that a goodly portion of revenues in the NDP plan go to protect lower income households from the resulting broad price increases in all elements of the cost of living. Bit of an oversight I would say. The NDP plan expressed that in a sentence. Let alone this is expected in the NDP, it is also an essential element of the 'selling pragmatics' of the overall package.

Here is the political calculation side of the whole package.

Cap and trade WILL lead to generalized price increases. One advantage it has over the carbon tax is the gradual and mediated nature. Carbon tax simply gets passed on immediately. There is significant lag time in cap and trade between carbon pricing coming in and end product price increases.

That buys time for household and businesses to lower their energy useage and have net cost savings even with the price increases. The government grants and incentives are a big part of this.... and the expenditures start before the carbon pricing and the cap and trade revenues come into effect.

But only lower income people are financially protected from the price increase effects. Everybody else will be paying more unless they get their butts in gear. And except for those of us who are really dilligent in doing so, there is no guarantee we will not be paying more in living costs.

 

KenS

Because the whole package touches on areas the NDP has historically stayed away from, the whole package was never sold. And as 3rd or 4th party we could have our niche taken care of by just emphasiszing 'polluters should pay'.

But you cannot get any of the elements- including the 'polluters will pay' part- unless you sell people on the whole package. I alwasy hoped we would take some baby steps in that direction. We didn't.

We have more leverage and credibility now. But the fundamental political project, and the requirements, for getting this has not changed.

If we want it, we have to sell the whole package. 

It seems highly unlikely we are going to get there unless the leader prospect[s] saying he wants this to happen makes a start by engaging the membership in a discussion of what is entailed.

Howard

KenS wrote:

Because the whole package touches on areas the NDP has historically stayed away from, the whole package was never sold. And as 3rd or 4th party we could have our niche taken care of by just emphasiszing 'polluters should pay'.

But you cannot get any of the elements- including the 'polluters will pay' part- unless you sell people on the whole package. I alwasy hoped we would take some baby steps in that direction. We didn't.

We have more leverage and credibility now. But the fundamental political project, and the requirements, for getting this has not changed.

If we want it, we have to sell the whole package. 

It seems highly unlikely we are going to get there unless the leader prospect[s] saying he wants this to happen makes a start by engaging the membership in a discussion of what is entailed.

Quit talking in circles and tell us what "the whole package" is.

Debater

Quebec political analyst Joel-Denis Bellavance said on Power Play tonight on CTV that the NDP risks being a one-term wonder in Quebec unless it elects Mulcair leader.

Meanwhile, Don Martin suggested to Bellavance that if Mulcair becomes leader he will hurt the NDP in the rest of Canada, and Bellavance didn't seem to disagree.

Interesting dilemma.

Bookish Agrarian

or complete hogwash.  I expect the latter.  

On the other hand the Liberals will decline even further in their final stronghold of Ontario if Rae manages to cling to the leadership, yet there is no one who has the skills to build their morally bankrupt party.

Interesting dilemma.

Debater

Yawn.

Time for some Christmas shopping. Cool

Unionist

How many of them were wearing glasses?

 

TheArchitect

Isabelle Morin, Member of Parliament for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, has endorsed Brian Topp today.  She becomes the eleventh MP to endorse Topp.

Isabelle Morin was one of the five MPs who publicly called on Peter Julian to run for the leadership and pledged support to him if he did.  She is the second of these five to endorse another candidate for the leadership; Kennedy Stewart endorsed Topp shortly after Julian announced he wouldn't run.  The other three (Brian Masse, Alex Atamanenko and Rathika Sitsabaiesan) have not endorsed any of the candidates who are running.

Idealistic Prag... Idealistic Pragmatist's picture

AnonymousMouse wrote:

This is very consistent with what I've heard--including on Rabble, frankly. Out of sorts in the debates, big rooms and mingling social settings, but much better a the head of a smaller room (10 to 40 people) talking and talking questions.

For what it's worth, there were more than 100 people at the Edmonton event that prompted this discussion.

And I didn't say he was out of sorts in the mingling social setting beforehand and afterward--actually, I said quite the opposite (that he had improved so much in that regard that he can now hold his own against the best of the other candidates). I did say that he wasn't as good one-on-one as he is taking questions in front of an audience, but that's not the same thing.

Stockholm

Debater wrote:

Quebec political analyst Joel-Denis Bellavance said on Power Play tonight on CTV that the NDP risks being a one-term wonder in Quebec unless it elects Mulcair leader.

Meanwhile, Don Martin suggested to Bellavance that if Mulcair becomes leader he will hurt the NDP in the rest of Canada, and Bellavance didn't seem to disagree.

This is claptrap on so many levels I don't even know where to begin. First of all, if Mulcair became leader of the NDP, I think he would do just fine in English Canada. Is an an anglophone crusader for federalism in Quebec and he is a very articulate polished performer. He would be an easy sell to the NDP universe in TROC.

Second of all, I thik that the only way the NDP loses Quebec is if Robert Chisholm becomes the next leader - which will not happen. All the other candidates are either perfectly bilingual (ie: Saganash and Topp) or speak very very good French (Nash and to a lesser extent Cullen and Dewar). The fact is, THERE IS NO WHERE ELSE FOR QUEBECERS WHO VOTED NDP TO GO! Who else will they vote for?? Forget Harper's Tories who are several quantum leaps to the right of mainstream Quebec opinion on every issue. The BQ? Well they now have a rightwing business tycoon as their new leader who wants to reorient the BQ to just campaign in support of Quebec independence - talka bout going after a niche market. He seems ready to abandon Duceppe's attempt to position the BQ as a leftwing party. As for the Liberals, they are totally moribund, have a toxic brand and have no leadership contenders likely to light Quebec on fire. All things eing equal, the NDP will have ten times as many seats as the Liberals in Quebec in 2015.

So again, its easy to spout pablum about the NDP losing ground in Quebec, but i have yet to hear any reasonable theory as to which party would gain ground in that scenario.

Debater

I hope that Isabelle Morin, and the other NDP MP's who won traditionally Liberal seats in Quebec are going to start standing up for English minority rights in Quebec and for a strong federal Canada, otherwise, NDG-Lachine, Pierrefonds-Dollard, Lasalle-Emard, Laval-Les Iles, Hull-Aylmer & Honore-Mercier may return to the Liberals in the next election.  I don't think voters in those federalist ridings support the NDP's plan to increase Bill 101 or to abolish the Clarity Act.

Debater

Stockholm wrote:

Debater wrote:

Quebec political analyst Joel-Denis Bellavance said on Power Play tonight on CTV that the NDP risks being a one-term wonder in Quebec unless it elects Mulcair leader.

Meanwhile, Don Martin suggested to Bellavance that if Mulcair becomes leader he will hurt the NDP in the rest of Canada, and Bellavance didn't seem to disagree.

This is claptrap on so many levels I don't even know where to begin. First of all, if Mulcair became leader of the NDP, I think he would do just fine in English Canada. Is an an anglophone crusader for federalism in Quebec and he is a very articulate polished performer. He would be an easy sell to the NDP universe in TROC.

Not anymore he isn't Stockholm!  That was only back in his days as a Charest MLA in Chomedy.  He now supports increasing Bill 101 and abolishing the Clarity Act!  He has been denounced by The Montreal Gazette.  You're a smart man and I think you know this.  There are loads of statements by Mulcair on record now supporting BQ policies.

 

http://www.montrealgazette.com/news/Mulcair+defender+anglo+rights+more/5...

 

http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2011/10/18/national-post-editorial-b...

AnonymousMouse

OttawaObserver wrote:

"What I don't think will be effective in the first year is just to give the press gallery the kind of rowdy, nasty Question Period they like to cover. A lot more will be entailed than that. I worry that when people say 'to take on Harper' that that's all they have in mind. That's the strategy the Liberals used, and while it won them a lot of praise in the press gallery, it turns out the gallery hasn't got the first clue about the country outside the bubble or how politics works."

I find it interesting you mention that.

Mulcair has been saying we need a leader who can defeat Stephen Harper--sometimes using that pretty generic phrase "take him on".

Brian Topp--explicitly saying that he was referring to Mulcair--has said that we won't beat Stephen Harper with kind of angry, negative campaign that the Liberals ran. Now other people are repeating this.

But there's absolutely zero evidence that that's what Mulcair intends to do. He's said we need someone who's tough and someone who can take a punch. But nothing that would imply he'd run the kind of campaign Topp is suggesting he would.

And we don't have to guess about this. We've seen the way Mulcair has campaigned against the Liberals, the Bloc and the Conservative, It isn't the "Harper's far-right" scare tactics that the Liberals used. For the most part it is tough, incisive criticism of their policies mixed with creative policies of our own (see Quebec), charm, experience, depth, seriousness and charisma.

I the sense from your comments that you think someone like Paul Dewar would do better taking on Harper by providing a contrast to Harper's style. I've heard that from others and--frankly--I think it'll never play out that way.

Yes, Dewar presents himself as the boy next door. And, yes, that's why the Conservatives won't go after him head on. But what they will do is use Dewar as an example of everything you've ever feared about the NDP. There are a lot of people who like the NDP, who would never trust us to govern. They think we're nice--boys next door all around--but don't take us seriously enough to put the fate of the country in our hands.

Someone who can "take on Harper" is someone who can stand on stage with him and look like the Prime Minister.

Stockholm

I don't actually see much difference between what Mulcair supports and what provincial and federal Liberals support in Quebec. I guess i need to remind you that the Quebec Liberal Party - including all its anglophone MNAs voted to unanimously to oppose the Clarity Act. The Liberals under interim leader Rae seem to be trying to be even more pro-French than the NDP what with their recent stances on bilingual AGs and supreme court judges etc...

Wake me up when the federal Liberal Party pledges invoke the notwithstanding clause and amend the constitution and disallow Bill 101 all in the name of "protecting" the poor Westmount Rhodesians from the French oppressors - then we'll talk.

BTW: The angryphone columnists in the Gazette have been attacking Mulcair and the NDP for not being dedicated enough to "English rights" for years and this reached a crescendo pitch during the federal election campaign. It didn't matter and anglo-Quebecers voted almost en masse for the NDP. You, like most Liberals, are stuck in a time warp where you think this is 1977 all over again. Wake up Rip van Winkle!

Bookish Agrarian

Debater wrote:

Yawn.

Time for some Christmas shopping. Cool

 

So no confronting the face in the mirror I see.  Typical Liberal- ignore reality and then spend money like there is no tomorrow.

ottawaobserver

AnonymousMouse, it sounds like we understand one another, and just disagree, but at least agree on what we're disagreeing on.

First of all, there's a much harder edge to a lot of Mulcair's interventions than you're acknowledging. I will be the first to admit he's been very upbeat more recently during the leadership campaign, but I also notice that he can't miss taking a jab at other candidates in nearly every audio or video I've heard of him. That kind of thing is not winning me over.

Secondly, I disagree with you that Dewar "doesn't look prime ministerial", though again I'll admit that's certainly in the eye of the beholder. Certainly he wins support from across the board in Ottawa, and so would have to be given credit for having broader appeal than you think. He looks very prime ministerial to me, and I think is particularly appealing to younger voters.

As to your comment on Topp's original point about being positive, it's one he's argued for some time, and I think is a key part of how Jack decided to proceed (plus it just fit Jack's style in general already). But that's the one thing that sometimes doesn't sit right about Brian, because here he is saying you need to be positive to beat the angry old uncles, but in the next minute takes a few swipes at his competitors as well (and not very well either). While I'll be the first to agree that Paul Dewar didn't have a great first debate, probably his best part of that performance was when he fended off Topp. Had the tables been turned, one wonders how well Brian would have done. It showed me that Paul has some good political chops, and can be effective under fire - and even then keep it fairly positive at the same time.

I still need to be satisfied about his french, and see more from him in Quebec. I also want to watch Topp's progress from now to March.

But I feel pretty strongly about the style aspect. I don't know your gender, but I wonder if it's in part a male-female thing. I am really really sick of nasty angry "tough" politics. REALLY sick of it. I don't even watch question period or the political shows anymore, and I only consult Twitter under absolute dire necessity to know, or by watching filtered Twitter tickers. I do not want to watch a big nasty angry dust-up between our guy and their guy, and I sure as hell don't want to participate in it. I think there are other ways to win against Harper with women and younger folks, and in fact I'm pretty sure that's the only way to do it. Those are our key target groups, and all the research I've seen on them is that they hate it too.

ottawaobserver

Bookish Agrarian wrote:

Debater wrote:

Yawn.

Time for some Christmas shopping. Cool

So no confronting the face in the mirror I see.  Typical Liberal- ignore reality and then spend money like there is no tomorrow.

OO loves BA.

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

Hunkey_Monkey wrote:

Interesting... I've heard he's been underwhelming at most of his meet and greets.

Besides "knowing a lot", what impressed you, Stock and Lou?

I've seen him perform in scrums, panels, and during the debate and the forum at the BC conventions. Not very impressive. Did you find him much different?

What can I say? I've seen Topp underwhelm too.  But last night he had the crowd eating out of his hand.

He had a lot of great stories.  Almost every question was answered with an anticdote of some sort - generally one that was really interesting and charming.  It helped to illustrate his points, show how experienced he was, and keep the audience listening.  It was the exact opposite of what I've sometimes complained about Peggy Nash doing - where she speaks only in political theory and never brings the subject down to earth.

He showed a plausable path to victory.  He showed good instincts. And he showed he can connect with this crowd of middle class, educated, mostly older party members.

Does it mean I'm going to vote for him? I don't know, maybe. I still have to see him 'perform on the small screen' as David Climinhaga describes.  I'm concerned that he might be the right candidate for the base, but might not translate well to the 40% of Canadians we need to vote NDP.  I'm concerned that he might be easy for the Conservatives to slime, like they did Dion and Iggy, and I'm concerned that for all the brave talk about holding Quebec with a non-Mulcair leader - it's nothing but talk. Finally, I'm concerned that last night was something of a fluke and he can't be comfortable in other, more stressful situations.

But for all those concerns, Topp is still an impressive person and my opinion of him is much higher today than it was yesterday.

Howard

I think we can all agree that we find Debater grating Laughing

United in our opposition to the Liberal blowhards amongst us.

Gaian

Thak you for all your work, AM. Much appreciated.

Wilf Day

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I don't think your last comment is fair. I took one mild jab at Topp over experience very early on on Quebec radio, but since then hasn't throw so much as a slap at the other candidates.

Hi, Tom, glad to see you're on babble. :)

TheArchitect wrote:

Isabelle Morin, Member of Parliament for Notre-Dame-de-Grâce—Lachine, has endorsed Brian Topp today.  She becomes the eleventh MP to endorse Topp.

Brave of her, since I just suggested she might be asked to give up her seat to Topp. Oh, she doesn't read babble? Shucks.

AnonymousMouse

KenS wrote:

"The backgrounder does not say it will extend the existing NDP plan- in fact, it does not referr to it."

The backgrounder says the plan would extend beyond just the 700 large emitters in the country--which was what was covered by the previous plan--to include all major sources of emissions.

The press release on Mulcair's website explicitly says "Mulcair proposed a new 'comprehensive cap and trade plan' that would build on the popular proposal New Democrats campaigned on during the last election".

http://www.thomasmulcair.ca/site/2011/12/08/mulcair-announces-new-compre...

KenS wrote:

"But core parts of the plan- presuming it is the existing NDP one- are politically sensitive, and that is why we have seen only occassioonal references to it in the last 5 years- and never even a big picture painted of the whole plan. So what good is is just Mulcair referring to it? What does that get us? You want the man to be leader anyway. Why should the rest of us think he means to do any more than the staus quo mention 'there is a cap and trade plan' that we have been getting?"

I completely disagree that we've only seen occassioonal references to the NDP's cap and trade plan over the last five years. Layton talked about it all the time--cap and trade, cap and trade. Mulcair is NOT just referring to it, he's proposing extending it to be an upstream plan that covers all major sources of emissions rather than just the 700 largest emitters. Those large emitters--LFEs, large final emitters at fixed sites--are responsible for 50% of climate change emissions (I know because Jack Layton said it all the time). Mulcair is proposing that cap and trade should be "comprehensive", "upstream" and cover all major sources of emissions. That's a big, bold idea.

KenS wrote:

"The climate change legislation we pushed and Harper killed was not an attempt to implement our proposed legislation. That bill was neither a comprehensive policy, nor was it politically sensitive in going places the NDP has not been ready to go."

Our legislation wasn't an attempt to implement our legislation? Assuming you mean that it wasn't an attempt to implement our PLAN, that's simply not true. The legislation would have required the government to use its existing authority to cap emissions from LFEs to cover climate change pollution and required them to meet overall caps on greenhouse gas emissions. That left lots of details for the government to work out, but that's because (a) private members' bills can't appropirate funds and (b) the public service will be needed to work out all the details.

"Could you name off the basic elements of the NDP climate change package [which Cullen was the major architect of], and how they relate to each other? If so, you are in a fairly small minority even among policy aware people in the NDP."

Cap and trade. Large final emitters. Phase in 100% auction of permits. Minimum price floor ($35/ton if memory serves). Revenue positive with money used for a variety of purposes laid out in our platform in the last election. Overall emissions reduction of 25% below 1990 levels by 2020.

Obviously, specific numbers like revenue projections, price floors and emissions targets will change over time--particularly since the Cons aren't likely to do anything positive between now and the time we form government, but that's the basic outline of the plan. The whole picture.

KenS wrote:

"Mulcair left out entirely that a goodly portion of revenues in the NDP plan go to protect lower income households from the resulting broad price increases in all elements of the cost of living."

From the very portion of the backgrounder you quote: "Use revenue generated by a cap and trade system to help families reduce their energy use and lower their overall energy costs."

Mulcair has proposed a big, bold idea. He's not hiding the nature of the policy, but he's obviously selling it in the way he believes will appeal to the most people possible.

I don't really have a clue what you would like to see him do, but it seems like you're saying that even if we win the next election won't be able to implement such a plan unless he goes around talking about how cap and trade will produce "broad price increases" across the economy--that we'd somehow lack a mandate.

I don't at all think that's necessary for a variety of reasons--including the price lag to which you refer, but many other factors as well that will all mitigate the impact on oridinary people. There are times when people need to be told "hard truths", but research shows quite clearly that people are already willing to bare the price of dealing with climate change that would be involved in a cap and trade plan. There were several very specific studies done on the cost to ordinary consumers of the Waxman-Markey cap and trade legislation in the States; surveys showed even Americans were willing to pay the amount of money involved as a cost of addressing climate change. Ther have been other less specific polls in Canada showng that people are willing to pay to fight climate change. We need to be honest about what our policies are, present them in the most positive way possible and let our opponents be the ones to criticize the downside. Then we need to win the next election and get it done.

AnonymousMouse

Wilf Day wrote:
AnonymousMouse wrote:
I don't think your last comment is fair. I took one mild jab at Topp over experience very early on on Quebec radio, but since then hasn't throw so much as a slap at the other candidates.

Hi, Tom, glad to see you're on babble. :)

Yes, typo. For the record: I am Spartacus, not Thomas Mulcair.

AnonymousMouse

Stockholm wrote:

"Just a few corrections here. Turner was not leader of the opposition when he was destroyed. he succeeded Trudeau and was PM just like Kim Campbell (briefly)! then he lost the election."

Of course. Thanks for pointing that out. On the other hand, Turner and Campbell might be examples of the same rule as applied to "newly selected leaders of the two largest parties in the House that inevitably come under the most scrutiny". We could throw in Paul Martin too. Trudeau called an election so fast he didn't have a chance for that first bas year; Martin's year arguable started during the long exit of Jean Chretien.

Stockholm wrote:

"On the other hand here are some other examples of opposition leaders who did have bad starts: Pearson in 1957/58, Stephen Harper got off to a rough start in 2004 and almost quit after losing the '04 election."

Yes, and so did Jean Chretien as you mention, but that's my point: they all had the chance to recover before the election. That, of course, leads to my caveat that this may just be a question of whether the leader gets a chance to recover from that first year before a campaign, but I think it is--at the very least--strong evidence that the first year can really matter.

ottawaobserver

AnonymousMouse wrote:

I will refrain from commenting on that for fear of starting another dust up, but suffice it to say I have had similar thoughts.

BTW, I haven't found our conversation to be a "dust up". Just the contrary. Very constructive and interesting.

Debater

Howard wrote:

I think we can all agree that we find Debater grating Laughing

United in our opposition to the Liberal blowhards amongst us.

In other words, you dislike it when someone says something which is true and backs it up with citations to newspaper articles and editorials as I did above.  What I stated was not just my opinion, but a matter of fact regarding Mulcair's public record & voting history in the past several years, and as you can see, he has already made some enemies in the media.

But don't worry, Howard, I find it quite grating myself here sometimes when I am always I'm wrong even when I'm right.  It would be different if we were on t.v. together on a political panel where you couldn't get away with it, but when we're on a board which is 99% NDP supporters I realize that might is right around here.  It's easy to gang up against the lone voice that doesn't agree with the majority spin.

Come 2012 you may be even happier.  In the New Year I may move on to pastures anew and trouble you no more.  Isn't that great?  Smile  I may be returning to my swamp in the ground from which I was born.  And you'll be free to have everyone agreeing with everyone else here with no dissenting view.  Just like life at a Conservative caucus meeting presided over by King Harper.

 

"Let all the poisons that lurk in the mud hatch out."  

 

'I, Claudius' by Robert Graves 

Howard

AnonymousMouse wrote:
 Mulcair specifically said "being tough isn't the same thing as being mean".

This reminds me of the whole Air Farce joke on Jack Layton's New Kind of Strong ad....that strengthens strongly, etc

I agree with Mulcair (and Topp [and Nash {and others}]) on this one. Being tough isn't about being mean, it is about taking a well-thought out and principled stand and having the gumption and brains to defend it. Liberals haven't heard of this concept since Jean Chrétien. As such, Topp's stand on raising taxes is brave, and he has mostly done a good job defending it. That being said, there have been some holes noted and I think he should acknowledge them, even if that doesn't change his position. Another thing New Democrats have to be ready for is when their/our "strong" stances don't go over well with the public. We attack Harper for his strong stands that fly in the face of what the majority of the public want, but when the NDP does the same thing (espousing an unpopular policy), it needs to have the integrity to assume responsibility for the fallout, unlike Harper. One of the things I have least liked about the democratic left in the last few years is the way in which they call Harper a regime or a dictator, etc.

While it is true that Harper has been undemocratic in his use of power, I know many people that democratically chose him as their leader (40% of the population) and those people don't feel like they are part of a regime or a dictatorship. Don't make them feel they are, for exercising their democratic right to vote, either. This was part of the brilliance of Jack Layton, who used to start off right after each election campaign by vowing to try and work with all elected representatives and respect the democratic voice/choice the voters had made in electing them. In that same vein, when the new NDP leader enters the House of Commons, I hope they will revive Jack Layton's promise to improve decorum in the House of Commons and pull us back from the vituperation of late.

AnonymousMouse

ottawaobserver wrote:

AnonymousMouse wrote:

I will refrain from commenting on that for fear of starting another dust up, but suffice it to say I have had similar thoughts.

BTW, I haven't found our conversation to be a "dust up". Just the contrary. Very constructive and interesting.

Yes, I didn't mean with you. I meant general dust ups about Topp tactics.

Howard

Debater wrote:

Howard wrote:

I think we can all agree that we find Debater grating Laughing

United in our opposition to the Liberal blowhards amongst us.

In other words, you dislike it when someone says something which is true and backs it up with citations to newspaper articles and editorials as I did above.  What I stated was not just my opinion, but a matter of fact regarding Mulcair's public record & voting history in the past several years, and as you can see, he has already made some enemies in the media.

But don't worry, Howard, I find it quite grating myself here sometimes when I am always I'm wrong even when I'm right.  It would be different if we were on t.v. together on a political panel where you couldn't get away with it, but when we're on a board which is 99% NDP supporters I realize that might is right around here.  It's easy to gang up against the lone voice that doesn't agree with the majority spin.

Come 2012 you may be even happier.  In the New Year I may move on to pastures anew and trouble you no more.  Isn't that great?  Smile  I may be returning to my swamp in the ground from which I was born.  And you'll be free to have everyone agreeing with everyone else here with no dissenting view.  Just like life at a Conservative caucus meeting presided over by King Harper.

 

"Let all the poisons that lurk in the mud hatch out."  

 

'I, Claudius' by Robert Graves 

Whoa there, Silver. I retract the Liberal blowhards bit, but I never said you were a bad person. Debate along.

AnonymousMouse

ottawaobserver wrote:

AnonymousMouse, it sounds like we understand one another, and just disagree, but at least agree on what we're disagreeing on.

Agreed.

ottawaobserver wrote:

First of all, there's a much harder edge to a lot of Mulcair's interventions than you're acknowledging. I will be the first to admit he's been very upbeat more recently during the leadership campaign, but I also notice that he can't miss taking a jab at other candidates in nearly every audio or video I've heard of him. That kind of thing is not winning me over.

I think you'd obviously see Mulcair take a somewhat lighter touch as Leader than as Deputy just as he took a lighter touch as Deputy than as a minister and took a lighter touch as a minister than as an opposition member provincial (where he was truly on the attack).

That being said, I don't think your last commnet is fair. He took one mild jab at Topp over experience very early on in Quebec radio, but since then hasn't thrown so much as a slap at the other candidates. He has been very frank about having some problems within the party over Quebec membership sign ups and increasing French language capacity, and he has certainly acknowledged the whisper campaign that someone or some people were using against him in the media early on, but none of that is a jab against the other candidates.

ottawaobserver wrote:

Secondly, I disagree with you that Dewar "doesn't look prime ministerial", though again I'll admit that's certainly in the eye of the beholder. Certainly he wins support from across the board in Ottawa, and so would have to be given credit for having broader appeal than you think. He looks very prime ministerial to me, and I think is particularly appealing to younger voters.

I wouldn't go as far as to say Dewar "doesn't look prime ministerial". I'm saying that the very "boy next door" appeal that allows Dewar to play with a broad cross section of a riding like Ottawa-Centre (where his mother's presence/memory looms large) also plays into the most damaging stereotypes about the NDP--which have always been more "they've got their heads in the clouds" than "they're Communists!". If Dewar wins between the massive deficit he will start at in Quebec and the opportunity he will present to the Cons, I think he'd have a very difficult time. If he wins, no one will hope that scenario doesn't come to pass more than I, but hope is not a plan.

ottawaobserver wrote:

As to your comment on Topp's original point about being positive, it's one he's argued for some time, and I think is a key part of how Jack decided to proceed (plus it just fit Jack's style in general already). But that's the one thing that sometimes doesn't sit right about Brian, because here he is saying you need to be positive to beat the angry old uncles, but in the next minute takes a few swipes at his competitors as well (and not very well either).

I will refrain from commenting on that for fear of starting another dust up, but suffice it to say I have had similar thoughts.

ottawaobserver wrote:

But I feel pretty strongly about the style aspect. I don't know your gender, but I wonder if it's in part a male-female thing. I am really really sick of nasty angry "tough" politics. REALLY sick of it.

I am male. And I do agree there is a gender element to this, but I also agree we can BE better and DO better than the tactics Liberals and Conservatives have been throwing at each other for years. I'm just not worried that Mulcair is what the negative spin being put out there about him claims he is. Yes, he can clearly be a street fighter when he thinks he needs to be, but he almost always keeps it highbrow, that's clearly NOT his only speed and I think he generally has the political judgement to tell when he needs to be at that speed (less so when your a party leader, for one).

A friend relayed to me that they took this up with him directly at an event he did in Toronto. Mulcair specifically said "being tough isn't the same thing as being mean".

wage zombie

The Liberal Party has no integrity and frankly I have not seen Debater demonstrate any during his time at babble.  He is here to sell us shit in a red foil package.  What a swell guy.

writer writer's picture

ottawaobserver wrote:

I am really really sick of nasty angry "tough" politics. REALLY sick of it. I don't even watch question period or the political shows anymore, and I only consult Twitter under absolute dire necessity to know, or by watching filtered Twitter tickers. I do not want to watch a big nasty angry dust-up between our guy and their guy, and I sure as hell don't want to participate in it. I think there are other ways to win against Harper with women and younger folks, and in fact I'm pretty sure that's the only way to do it. Those are our key target groups, and all the research I've seen on them is that they hate it too.

A great big huge yes to this.

doofy

I need to respond to Stockholm #10

It's very tempting to think Quebecers have nowehere to go  (I thought so myself in days following May 2nd), but it's clear that the NDP's performance in Parliament has caused a lot of people to reassess. You can also be sure that Quebecor does not want an NDP gov't and will be doing eveything it can to prop up the other parties.

Daniel Paille is not an English-Canadian style "business tycoon". (i.e. He is not a separatist Maxime Bernier) A close friend of Jacques Parizeau, he is more of a "champagne socialist", or at least that's the way he is presenting himself. If you listen to his rhetoric, he is attempting to draw a clear distinction between Reform Party "Canadian" values and "Quebec values". If the NPD is unable to effectively defend "Quebec values" in Parliament, QCers might be inclined to go back to the Bloc.

The Liberals should not be counted out as well. Bob Rae is far more skilled than Ignatieff and with no roots in the party (had nothing to do with sponsorship), he may be able to rebrand the Liberals so that they can at least get back the centre/centre-left federalist vote. Finally, the Conservatives might have a chance in the rural areas.

In short, QCers have lots of options and you are making A HUGE mistake in taking those 59 seats for granted. Joel Denis Bellavence was absolutely right that Mulcair is the best candidate to hold on to them. (Especially considering that Quebecor has foolishly written him off. They are  already saying that a victory by another candidate would be a slap in the face to Quebec. Imagine how dumbfounded they will be if they end up with a Mulcair-led NDP on March 24th. They'll have to find a new narrative) Topp might get a hearing; it was a bold move to announce that he wants to run in QC and it may help him down the line. (Although running in Hull might be a bit of cop-out) Nash, Cullen and Dewar represent huge risks. None of them speak French with near-Native fluency. If Dewar wins, the Quebec NDP MPs could as well pack it in. He and Chisolm are being extremely irresponsible by staying in the race, when the party clearly needs them in the House of Commons.

 

Stockholm

There is no comparison between Dewar and Chisholm. Chisholm does not speak French. Period. Nothing. Nada. Dewar speaks and understands at what i would call an advanced level. He just has a heavy accent and screws up his tenses from time to time. On a scale of 1 to 100 where 100 means being a native speaker French and 1 means speaking no French whatsoever - Chisholm would rate about a 5 and Dewar would rate about a 70.

Bookish Agrarian

writer wrote:

ottawaobserver wrote:

I am really really sick of nasty angry "tough" politics. REALLY sick of it. I don't even watch question period or the political shows anymore, and I only consult Twitter under absolute dire necessity to know, or by watching filtered Twitter tickers. I do not want to watch a big nasty angry dust-up between our guy and their guy, and I sure as hell don't want to participate in it. I think there are other ways to win against Harper with women and younger folks, and in fact I'm pretty sure that's the only way to do it. Those are our key target groups, and all the research I've seen on them is that they hate it too.

A great big huge yes to this.

 

 

And I am feeling the love right back over these words as well.

 

I was sort of talking about this issue with someone the other day.  I put it like this.  "The Conservatives already have the asshole vote sown up.  Why would we want to compete with that.  It seems far better to me to compete on values and ideas, making life better and hope, not who can pee the farthest."  

As you can tell OO I am much less articulate than you and maybe a little saltier too.

Stockholm

doofy wrote:

Daniel Paille is not an English-Canadian style "business tycoon". (i.e. He is not a separatist Maxime Bernier) A close friend of Jacques Parizeau, he is more of a "champagne socialist", or at least that's the way he is presenting himself. If you listen to his rhetoric, he is attempting to draw a clear distinction between Reform Party "Canadian" values and "Quebec values". If the NPD is unable to effectively defend "Quebec values" in Parliament, QCers might be inclined to go back to the Bloc.

What will Paille do when CAQ wins the Quebec election and the PQ is demolished and the Legault government brings in a rightwing agenda of savage cuts to social programs and privatization? How would he be able to keep a straight face and claim that "Quebec values" were so different from Harper's values if the ex-PQ Premier of Quebec brings in a neo-con agenda and becomes Harper's best buddy?

Unionist

I have cautioned new babblers in the past to pay no attention to Stockholm when he says anything about Québec. Just repeating, in the interest of health and safety.

Stockholm

Instead of insulting peoples intelligence with juvenile name calling, if there is something I've said above that you disagree with - why don't you make an argument.

Did I hurt your feelings by calling Legault and the CAQ-ADQ alliance - a rightwing party? Does it upset you that I pointed out that new BQ leader the small "c" conservative business tycoon Paille will have a hard time claiming that "Quebec values" are radically different from "Canadian values" (if we accept Paille hateful anti-Canadian quasi-racist insult that all of English Canada's values are personified by Stephen Harper) if the next Quebec government has a rightwing philosophy that is actually very similar to the federal Conservative Party?

doofy

Couple of points for Stockholm:

1) For the purpose of connecting with Quebecers, Dewar is about as bad as Chisolm. Remember Stockwell Day vs. Preston Manning. They both got about the same result. 0 seats. Seeing that I've started historical paralells, a few more come to mind:

Peggy Nash & Nathan Cullen (Joe Clark): i.e. the sympathetic English canadian, who is respected, but never quite able to fit in

Thomas Mulcair (Brian Mulroney)- Native son, who will most likely keep the miracle going

Brian Topp (Jack Layton)- Born and raised in Quebec, but spent his career in English Canada. Will he be seen as an outsider? Could go anywhere from 1 to 59 seats; problem is that the NDP does not have the luxury to lose dozens of seats in Quebec. Most likely will lose seats rather than  gain. 

2) the CAQ is not Mike Harris lite.  The entire political specturm in Quebec is to the left of the one in English Canada. Legault supports Kyoto,  the gun registry, "soft on crime", an independent foreign policy, funding for the CBC. I'm sure Paille will be able to keep his narrative going, and if it ever gets complicated, he will do some skating around. (Just like the federal NDP does when it has to talk about Gary Doer)

 

 

 

Howard

Stockholm wrote:

Dewar speaks and understands at what i would call an advanced level. He just has a heavy accent and screws up his tenses from time to time. On a scale of 1 to 100 where 100 means being a native speaker French...Dewar would rate about a 70.

Umm, no. I appreciate your generosity towards Dewar, but unless the Ottawa debate was an off night for him, his French is significantly lacking. Could he lead a school trip to Québec? Yes. Could he go on tout le monde en parle without making a hash of it? Not given current evidence.

Based on his performance in Ottawa, Dewar's French is at the level of someone wrapping up their first year of university French as a second language. Singh is somewhere in second year and Chisholm dropped out after the first week of class. Not good enough... 

ETA: Cullen is also in second year. Nash has a BA in French (no really!). Ashton has done her studies and spent some time in immersion. Saganash and Topp are native speakers (the latter slightly out of practice but that is peripheral). Mulcair is a native anglophone speaker, which means that in spite of his unfortunate accent ;) he has excellent French.

Bookish Agrarian

That's the 2nd time you have ignored the presence of Romeo Saganash.  Which pretty much makes the rest of your points -well pointless.  

Stockholm

doofy wrote:

  The entire political specturm in Quebec is to the left of the one in English Canada.

Except when it comes to turning a blind eye to privatization of health care and being somewhat xenophobic and against accommodation of ethnic and relgious minorities.

The fact remains that in the next election, if Quebecers are still unhappy with Harper - they will have two choices - vote NDP to defeat him and replace him with an NDP government that will be 98% aligned with "Quebec values" (with the two exceptions above) or vote BQ and opt out of playing any role in the governance of Canada and guarantee another Tory government.

ottawaobserver

doofy wrote:

Couple of points for Stockholm:

1) For the purpose of connecting with Quebecers, Dewar is about as bad as Chisolm. Remember Stockwell Day vs. Preston Manning. They both got about the same result. 0 seats.

See, the lengths you go to to make your points, doofy, are what undermine them.

Dewar, who has a great record on Quebec and language issues, and lives next door to the place and has been working across the bridge for a long time you're comparing to Stockwell Day or Preston Manning whose parties were running against Quebec in their own ridings? Not even close.

Then earlier you said they were "irresponsible for running" or something? On what planet? Are we back in the Liberal game of telling people they can't participate in our democracy?

If there is no-one else who can keep Quebec but Mulcair, one really has to wonder why the more experienced and senior members of our Quebec caucus are coming to different conclusions. Are they all stupid?

Of course it would be stupid on our part to count out the Bloc, particularly when they still have a good deal of cash leftover in the kitty, and are getting a lot of public funding with only 5 seats. The Liberals I'm less worried about, but I'll defer to others on that. The fact that an NDP Leader wasn't baptized in a Montreal church is not going to matter in the allophone seats that comprise their base, and they will have their hands full keeping their incumbent seats across the country.

But a lot can happen in the next few years in Quebec. Plus we have three more months of this leadership race to go. You ought to hold your judgement. But in any event, saying they are irresponsible for running is really over the top.

Hunky_Monkey

Stockholm wrote:

doofy wrote:

  The entire political specturm in Quebec is to the left of the one in English Canada.

Except when it comes to turning a blind eye to privatization of health care and being somewhat xenophobic and against accommodation of ethnic and relgious minorities.

The fact remains that in the next election, if Quebecers are still unhappy with Harper - they will have two choices - vote NDP to defeat him and replace him with an NDP government that will be 98% aligned with "Quebec values" (with the two exceptions above) or vote BQ and opt out of playing any role in the governance of Canada and guarantee another Tory government.

Four years is a long time and the hatred of the federal Liberals may dissipate. What if they pick Dominic LeBlanc? He's likable and fluently bilingual. He's Acadian. Not saying it will happen but to write off the Liberals would be a big mistake. Same goes for writing off the BLOC especially when they continue to poll in the mid 20's.

We can't take our seats in Quebec for granted. To say there is nowhere voters can go is doing just that.

Hunky_Monkey

ottawaobserver wrote:

See, the lengths you go to to make your points, doofy, are what undermine them.

...

If there is no-one else who can keep Quebec but Mulcair, one really has to wonder why the more experienced and senior members of our Quebec caucus are coming to different conclusions. Are they all stupid?

More experienced and senior members of our Quebec caucus? *giggles*

Stockholm

It is worth noting though that the BQ has just four seats, and has no official party status and in about a year will lose all of its funding...by 2015 they may have already filed for bankruptcy protection from their creditors...it will be amusing to see Paille running around telling people to vote BQ just as a show of support for Quebec independence - after the PQ will have been annhiliated provincially.

Keep in mind that the BQ started its free fall in Quebec in mid-April after Duceppe gave a rousing speech to the PQ convention about his single minded devotion to Quebec independence and how he YEARNED for another referendum! I just hope Paille continues Duceppe's strategy and goes right on talking about separation and more referenda...at that rate if the BQ even competes in 2015 they will be lucky to get over 10% of the vote in Quebec.

Quite frankly, if I was a real "pur et dur" sovereignist - I would abstain from voting in federal elections altogether since why vote in the election of a country who existence i don't respect! 

Stockholm

Hunky_Monkey wrote:
What if they pick Dominic LeBlanc? He's likable and fluently bilingual. He's Acadian. 

Yes, Leblanc is bilingual, but ask anyone in Ottawa who works on parliament Hill or follows politics closely and they will tell you that he is not "likable" at all. He is a tedious blow-hard who is like Dennis Coderre only with less charm. Quebecers also have a bit of a history of being unimpressed by francophones from outside Quebec - particularly since they tend to be Trudeauite federalists etc...

Stockholm

Hunky_Monkey wrote:

More experienced and senior members of our Quebec caucus? *giggles*

I think OO is referring to the fact that the two Quebec MPs with the highest profile before and since the election (not counting those who are running like Mulcair or Saganash or those who are obliged to be neutral like Turmel and Caron) are Francoise Boivin and Alexandre Boulerice - and they are both backing Topp. There are a few other somewhat Quebec MPs who were somewhat higher profile before being elected or since like Tyrone Benskin and Helene Laverdiere and they are still neutral.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

I can't recall if there was a reply to my post on the earlier thread, but Rob Russo on CBC Sunday said the BQ are going up and the NDP down; and that the Quebec electorate is notoriously fickle (or something similar). I haven't seen that poll, personally. Things can change in the four years until the next federal election, so who knows what will happen in Quebec.

 

ETA: On P&P tonight someone (Patrick Paquin?) on one of the panels said the Cons are pretty well finished in Quebec because (for example)  Quebec resentment over scrapping the long gun registry is growing.

Stockholm

Boom Boom wrote:

 Rob Russo on CBC Sunday said the BQ are going up and the NDP down; and that the Quebec electorate is notoriously fickle (or something similar). ETA: On P&P tonight someone (Patrick Paquin?) on one of the panels said the Cons are pretty well finished in Quebec because (for example)  Quebec resentment over scrapping the long gun registry is growing.

I find it amusing how commentators from English-Canada who know zilch about Quebec will either say that Quebec votes "tribally" (and how do they describe the way Albertans vote - pray tell?) or they say the Quebec electrorate is so "fickle, when actually its no more fickle that many other parts of Canada. In fact Quebec was very consistent in its support for the BQ through six elections from 1993 to 2008 and then had a big realignment this year. During that period "FICKLE Ontario" went from giving 101 out of 103 seats to the Liberals to giving the Liberals just 11 seats out of 106! Oh and btw: in 1993 Nova Scotia gave all 11 of its seats to the Liberals by huge margins...four years later, the Liberals lost every single seat there as the NDP took 6 and the Tories 5 - boy those Nova Scotians sure are FICKLE and UNPREDICTABLE...and let's not even talk about those crazy FICKLE voters in Newfoundland who annhilated the federal Tories en masse in 2008 just because their "tribal" King Danny told them ABC!

BTW: For all the talk about the long gun registry being such a big issue in Quebec...let's not forget that just days after the Tories first voted to scrapt it two years ago - the Tories won a seat from the BQ in a byelection in rural Quebec.

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