NDP leadership 63

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Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Okay, I'll take your word for it, KenS. Meanwhile, Cullen should think through his position. Harper won a majority government with a minority of the voting public. I suspect the majority that voted against the Conservatives in 2011 would appreciate help from all quarters in overthrowing Harper next time around - and from the BQ in particular - because in working together, with the election of the NDP the overall goal, conditions under that NDP federal government in 2015 would certainly be better for Quebec than under Harper and his extreme right ideology.

Gaian

Gaian wrote:

I hope everyone reads that Berlin piece carefully, Wilf. Somehow, Jack's accomplishments in Quebec WERE being lost in the "return to virtue" on so many fronts that had always left us simply the party of conscience.

But we should also not see the appeal of a rationale from pure economics,an argument only from globalism and the necessity of trade, put forward by flight from kamakura, as the only alternative. There is no sovereignty in globalization, and to bring forward the idea of sustainability that is Mulcair's central position, we must have an industrial base. The "specialization" of nations into their own production niches, does not mean selling out eastern Canada's industrial base in the drive for Canada to achieve the status of "energy superpower, " Harper's goal.

Workers at the Caterpillar plant in London, Ontario, have voted to strike. Their situation puts in bold relief the positions being argued here on the eve of a new year, and the need to get it right.

The CAW situation at the London Cagterpillar plant as explained in the Canadian Press story:

"Members of the Canadian Auto Workers union say theyhave voted in favour of a strike at Canada's only locomotive manufacturing plant, owned by U.S.-based Caterpillar Inc.

"About 98 per cent of CAW Local 27 members voted to strike if necessary, at a meeting held Friday morning.

"The union, which represents some 650 production and skilled trades workers at the plant in London, Ont., has been negotiating with the heavy equipment giant since November in an effort to reach a new collective agreement that would replace a current six-month extension. The contract deadline is set for just before 12 a.m.Sunday.

"Caterpillar bought the London plant in June 2010, but within a year of the purchase three other locations in the U.S., Mexico and Brazil were slated to build locomotives.

"The CAW says the company's final offer would slash wages in half, result in drastic cuts to benefits and eliminate the pension plan - at a time when sales, profits and executive pay have soared to record highs.

"It has accused the company of purposely trying to put workers out of jobs in order to shift production to the U.S. or Mexico. The company could not immediately be reached for comment Friday.

"The union is concerned that Caterpillar may try to change the terms and conditions of employment once the collective agreement expires, but CAW national president Ken Lewenza said that if the terms and conditions remain, the employees will not strike. The CAW called on the federal government last week to review Cater;pillar's purchase of the plant back in 2010, saying the future of the plant and 800 jobs are in peril."

A political party is not likely to turn this situation around based on its virtue, but it can get damned smart and learn to play the game winningly. Before our manufacturing capacity is completely gutted, and while any sovereignty exists.

My post #25. in which I try for a positive position in this thread, and have not mentioned Ken.

Gaian

KenS wrote:

Gaian wrote:
 A political party is not likely to turn this situation around based on its virtue, but it can get damned smart and learn to play the game winningly. Before our manufacturing capacity is completely gutted, and while any sovereignty exists.

There is the part before the meat that I highlighted. Have been hearing a lot about what playine smart is not... especially playing to our own ideological orientations. Fine. I buy that as a principle... setting aside questions of how it is expressed, exactly where lines are drawn, etc.

And we have been hearing a lot about what comes after the highlighted part: what is going to happen if we do not do something about the hollowing out of manufacturing jobs, etc.

But politics is about the bolded part: getting smart and playing the game winningly. Which is not about erudition in economic matters, or even about economics in itself. Its about what a political party says it is going to DO. Or in common parlance "managing the economy". Thats a ridiculously fuzzy term... but it is adequate for describing the generalized expecations the voting public has for governments, and alternative visons of governing.

So what has Mulcair proposed we do?

Granted, he has promised policy that is not out yet. Actually, supporters have said he is promising it. I expect that must be true, but it hasnt been public enough that I get it without going and searching. At any rate, there is still plenty of time for policy to be released.

But a great deal of praise has been heaped on Mulcair and his prowess in economics. So is that based on any concrete expectations of what Mulciair is going to do?

Most of the things commending Mulcair would go into the category of reasons to like the idea of him in the 'economic management seat' if he comes Prime Minister.

But as Mulcair supporters of fond of reminding the rest of us- first we have to win.

 

Post #26...you will see that Ken cannot resist the urge to BAIT. Read the whole thing.

Gaian

oldgoat wrote:

Gaian, ... you appear to be relentlessly pursuing KenS to grapple with him on the points he makes, and every time you do it you get a bit more personal, and dial up the vitriol a bit more. Looking back through old threads looking into this is a half hour of my life I'll never get back. Cut it out.  Disengage for a while.

 

I should add, that as a returned PBB (previously banned babbler) you have absolutely no slack whatsoever.

I have never been banned, Og. My name change is one I adopted out of choice. The most time I've spent away since joining in October 2007 was a week or so.

I will certainly NOT refer to anything that Ken does in the future, and hope that he will, in kind, not play the game that he did here.

I am posting on babble because I really feel the need to articulate how I'm going to help preserve some kind of life for my granddaughter...we all have our reasons. There are many, many contradictions involved in talking about economic growth and preserving our biosphere - and my daughter knows I've been working at the latter, on the front lines, for 40 years now. I'll just have to challenge people to come up with answers where now all they can do is criticize. Perhaps that will pass muster in this place where discussion of globalism and nationalism , for instance, can take such strange turns.

Gaian

So, back to "hope is better than fear and optimism is better than despair."

And when the family is involved, truer words were never spoken. There MUST be a place to find shelter for positive, non-violent ideas for social change.

AnonymousMouse

Howard wrote:

KenS wrote:

Mulcair has said he is going to feature sustainability. Thats a good fremework principle.

And now you are presenting that as backing up this claim of yours

Gaian wrote:

Ken, you have seen how Mulcair intends to deal with the hollowing out of eastern manufacturing.

Where has Mulcair connected the dots?

That you know they are connected somewhere means nothing in poitics. Or whether Mulcair knows  how even intimatelythey are connected.

It's what you present on the public stage.

Mulcair has talked about removing all the subsidies to the energy sector and getting them to internalise the cost of their environmental damage through cap and trade. He has also opened the door to carbon taxation at the provincial level. All of these things would increase the cost of energy development and serve as a damper on this sector, allowing other sectors to compete for capital and labour.

And here's link where Mulcair connects the dots at some length.

http://thetyee.ca/News/2011/12/09/Thomas-Mulcair-Interview/

I don't know how you missed this KenS; I've seen him say it repeatedly.

AnonymousMouse

Boom Boom wrote:

Unionist wrote:

Right on, Boom Boom....

Thanks. I think Wilf was asleep at the wheel when he posted that bullshit article.

Oh, and by the way, below the article: Comments are closed for this entry No fucking kidding! The asshole who wrote the article doesn't want a rebuttal. Well, fuck him.

A little harsh. I thought there were definitely some unhelpful swipes in there, but the core anecdote about people wanting to vote with the "winners" even over the party that is and represents "losers" is insightful. I have seen this myself.

oldgoat

Gaian, I looked up your old account and sure enough it's still active, so I apologise for that.  I do recall some time ago that there had been warnings, and some discussion among moderators, hence my mistake.

This BTW is one of the reasons why we have a policy against multiple accounts, so if you're going to be Gaian from now on please stick with it.

duncan cameron

This story brought up by other babblers has to set a challenge for the NDP and the leadership candidates.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/caterpillar-sets-new-p...

The Quebec situation at RioTinto Alcan smells very bad as well.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/rio-tinto-locks-out-800-wo...

You cannot have globalization, democracy, and national sovereignty. Theoretically you could have democracy and globalization but in an imperial dominated world, middle and small powers need to coalesce in mulitiateral insitutions to protect national sovereignty. Otherwise democracy becomes impossible.

I think the 2015 election will turn on Ontario. How is the province going to deal with fallout from the truncated industrial sector? The Cons have to be vulnerable. Which of the NDP candidates will fight to create a national transoportation company? Use the Canadian government power to limit corporate power? Who best understands how corporate power is exercised, and what are its limits? Who can address the concerns of people who are being asked to take wage cuts, abandon pensions, lose workplace benefits, and access to public services?

Those worries are not going away anytime soon, and neglect and indifference from Ottawa will make things worse for more people.

 

OnTheLeft OnTheLeft's picture

Hunky_Monkey wrote:
BTW... could you give us Nash's policy on NAFTA and what changes she would *try* to negotiate. Thanks.

Nash stands for renegotiating NAFTA, just as Jack and the party does. Not sure about the specifics just off the top of my head at the moment. But you might find the changes that Jack and the party has talked about via some online research. You're welcome. 

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Please read what I've written more carefully if you intend to respond. What I very clearly wrote above is that because Yaffe doesn't provide us with a quote or refer to policy proposals thus far in the campaign, we don't know whether Yaffe is basing her assertion that Nash isn't proposing raising anyone's taxes on (a) the mere fact that Nash has not specifically proposed that yet or (b) on her interview with Nash. But, either way, that is a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT QUESTION than whether Nash "supports progressive taxation". Do you acknowledge that those are two completely different questions?

No, I don't need to read "more carefully" what you posted. I got it the first time. No need for caps-lock.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
words from the article you cite don't tell us ANYTHING about the point OO was making. Again, all Nash said was that "it's only fair that people who make the most are paying their fair share". That statement is a meaningless tautology.

Right. Committing to progressive taxation is a good thing.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Rhetorically I think it IS fair to take it as evidence that Nash supports progressive taxation, but since we already HAVE a system of progressive taxation that tells us nothing about whether Nash intends to make it more progressive or raise taxes.

We barely have a system of progressive taxation.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I don't have any problem with that. I don't think "here's how I'm going to raise taxes" is the most effective way to talk about this issue. But saying "I support progressive taxation" (if we assume that's what Nash meant) HAS SIMPLY NOTHING TO DO WITH whether she intends to raise taxes on high income earners.

You can't have it both ways. While you think that citing specifics is not "the most effective way to talk about this issue", you then state (without resorting to caps-lock) "has simply nothing to do with whether she intends to raise taxes on high income earners." And yes, obviously if someone says they support progressive taxation, than yes, they support progressive taxation. No need for further innuendo and speculation.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Are you just trying to be difficult?

Look who's talking.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I'm making the point that "supporting progressive taxation" is a meaningless phrase because every candidate in this race and every major political party in Canada (even the Conservatives) are officially on record as supporting progressive taxation.

No it's not. Our tax system needs serious reform. Our top tax rate and corporate rate are weak.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I read/watched several of them and had already read/watched several of them. More importantly, I have never 'complained' that Nash "wasn't specific enough in her policy proposals". I don't think I even CLAIMED that she wasn't specific enough in her policy proposals, but if I did it wasn't a complaint. What I did claim is that I haven't heard Nash say or propose anything particularly interesting or anything that varied in any meaningful way from existing party policy. That's not a complaint.

Well if it doesn't interest you, then don't spew negativity. There's various things the candidates have proposed and surely not everyone here feels the need to vent about how they're not "interesting" or "meaningful".

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I don't think leadership candidates need to run on the idea that they'd change existing party policy in any significant way. But you've repeatedly posted links about Peggy Nash while (a) complaining that commenters aren't discuss her or her proposals and/or (b) implying that there's something new or interesting there.

People regularly post links to articles in these leadership threads regarding news, speaking events etc regarding the leadership candidates. I posted some about Nash, and I got attacked for it, put on the spot, on the defensive etc. I haven't "complained", but defended myself from said attacks, and then pointed out near the end of thread 56 while people were bitching about about a lack of substance in regards to policy, I pointed out that if they actually bothered to read post 52, they'd actually find what they were looking for.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
The fact Nash seems to just be tilling well trode territory for the NDP (territory none of the candidates seem to take issue with) is relevant insofar as it means those links don't give anyone a positive reason to support Peggy Nash as opposed to the other leadership candidates (or even, frankly, much material for conversation).

Yeah sure. Keep up the spin.  

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Support for the CBC this long standing NDP territory.

Yes but not at BBC levels.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
If Peggy Nash made a CLEAR proposal to LITERALLY increase CBC funding to BBC levels that would be something new, but the link you provided doesn't give us a clear quote from Nash (much less a clear proposal), it's just a blog post about someone who saw her speak at an event writing in point form that Nash said "Government has been underfunding the CBC. Nash wants to see funding at BBC levels."

Yeah and so fucking what. It's amazing to hear that sort of proposal, even in its early vague stages, from anyone within the NDP and surely welcome.  

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Here's the problem with that.

Shocking, you see a problem with it.  

AnonymousMouse wrote:
The CBC receives about $1 billion in government funding. The BBC receives about $6 billion in government funding. The cost of producing radio and television programming doesn't actually vary on a per capita basis compared to the size of the audience, but even if we're generous by adjusting for population size an "equivalent" level of funding would still be $3 billion--a tripling of the CBC's government funding. I will bet you $3 billion that if Peggy Nash were to become leader the party's platform under her leadership would not propose a tripling of the CBC's funding.

Yeah of course, because you know what is going to transpire.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Even if Nash does make such a proposal, I see no evidence that she has done so yet.

Yes, because specific policy hasn't been released yet. Nonetheless this kind of commitment, like Topp's tax proposal, is very welcoming and a massive refreshing change.  

AnonymousMouse wrote:
I see no evidence that she has expressed anything more than normal NDP support for the CBC at this point. If she did, that would be something new, but hardly earth shattering stuff.

Enough spin already. The bottom line is that she said at the event that she would like to see the CBC's funding at BBC levels, and that is a big welcome from any New Democrat.

KenS

Gaian wrote:

Ken, you have seen how Mulcair intends to deal with the hollowing out of eastern manufacturing.

Where has Mulcair connected the dots?

That you know they are connected somewhere means nothing in poitics. Or whether Mulcair knows  how even intimatelythey are connected.

It's what you present on the public stage.

 

Howard wrote:

Mulcair has talked about removing all the subsidies to the energy sector and getting them to internalise the cost of their environmental damage through cap and trade. He has also opened the door to carbon taxation at the provincial level. All of these things would increase the cost of energy development and serve as a damper on this sector, allowing other sectors to compete for capital and labour.

AnonymousMouse wrote:
And here's link where Mulcair connects the dots at some length. http://thetyee.ca/News/2011/12/09/Thomas-Mulcair-Interview/ I don't know how you missed this KenS; I've seen him say it repeatedly.

I had already read that and took it into account. It is a long interview. though the relevant part is not all that long. I've attatched it below for reference. But I think Howard already summarised it perfectly well.

So unless someone can point to what Mulcair has said that is different than Howard's summary of the same- my reply to Howard is post#40.

"Connecting the dots" politically is more than just saying how everything is related, a truism in economics. Making the oil and gas industry pay its real costs is not a solution in itself to the loss of manufacturing jobs. Presumably, when [if] Mulcair issues a policy on that, he'll link to how his existing policies about the oil and gas industry will contribute to this yet to be announced or sketched out policy.

 

Mulcair interview wrote:

On how the current approach to Alberta's oil sands threatens Canadians' well-being:

"The problem is not to try to argue to stop exploiting the tar sands, that's not a realistic undertaking. But what we can do is stop doing the way that we're doing it. Pressing the U.S. to build the Keystone XL pipeline is a good example of behaving the same way we used to behave a century ago, when we would, at least in the east, export raw logs to the U.S. and then import back the furniture, which is a complaint that Tommy Douglas used to make at the time, but it's exactly the same behaviour. We're trying to connect ourselves as rapidly as possible to either Keystone XL (or other pipelines) and the minute you start that, you've created a problem, because the proportionality rule of the North American Free Trade Agreement obliges you to [ship a set percentage of your oil production to the U.S.].

"Keystone will export about 35,000 jobs, because there's no value added here, we're not doing any of the refining, processing, or additional value here.

"That's one side of it, the other side of it which is also economic, is the so-called Dutch Disease. When the Netherlands found important gas deposits off the coast in the '60s, they said, 'Hey, this is great, people are going to come and buy this stuff and we'll get all their currency, we'll be rich,' and they were. But what they didn't realize was that it was going to push the guilder through the roof, which it did. Within a few short years, they'd completely killed off their manufacturing sector.

"Our failure to apply basic rules of sustainable development like internalization of costs over the life cycle of a product, in this case the tar sands, has meant that we're artificially importing a large number of U.S. dollars that's exercised an upward pressure on the Canadian dollar. That high Canadian dollar in turn has made it increasingly difficult to export our manufactured products. Since the Conservatives arrived in power in Jan. 2006, Canada has bled off almost 500,000 good-paying manufacturing jobs, destabilizing the balanced economy that we'd built up since the Second World War."

On the myth that Harper's Conservatives are good managers: [continues in similar vein]

 

nicky

Happy New Year everyone!

Jonathan Ling has made an assessment of the candidates' standings in

demarchy.tumbir.com

under the heading"The End of the Second Period"

He divides the candidates as follows:

First Tier

1. Topp

2. Nash

3. Mulcair

Second Tier

4.Dewar

5. Ashton

6 Saganash

Bottom

7. Cullen

8. Singh

I don't find his analysis very convincing at all for several reasons but throw it out for your comments.

About a month ago he pronounced Mulcair's campaign "dead" so this may reflect something less than complete objectivity.

 

 

Lou Arab Lou Arab's picture

nicky wrote:

Happy New Year everyone!

Jonathan Ling has made an assessment of the candidates' standings in

demarchy.tumbir.com

This link doesn't seem to be correct.

ETA: Found it: http://demarchy.tumblr.com/post/14750924652/ndp-leadership-race-at-a-glance

Hunky_Monkey

Malcolm wrote:

I don't care to listen to the prognostications of amateur soothsayers, nor to the handful of elitists who'd like to remove any candidate who isn't both white and Anglo-Saxon.  (After all, the bulk of this disgustingly elitist meme has attacked the Indian guy, the Sikh guy and the Greek girl.)

Let's be clear though... it's not because they're the "Indian guy, the Sikh guy and the Greek girl". I'd venture to guess there are people supporting them because of that though.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Boom Boom wrote:

I thought there were definitely some unhelpful swipes in there, but the core anecdote about people wanting to vote with the "winners" even over the party that is and represents "losers" is insightful. I have seen this myself.

 

I think some poeple went looking for gnats to choke on and missed the point of the article which was that Jack's greatest accomplishment was changing the culture of the federal NDP from one of feckless self-righteousness to one of principled but pragmatic effectiveness.

At least, David Berlin and Wilf and you and I think of that as a great accomplishment.  Some in the party would like to dial it back.

(And, to relate this directly to the leadership matter, a lot of what I hear from Nash supporters makes me fearful of precisely that.)

Gaian

duncan cameron wrote:

This story brought up by other babblers has to set a challenge for the NDP and the leadership candidates.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/report-on-business/caterpillar-sets-new-p...

The Quebec situation at RioTinto Alcan smells very bad as well.

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/globe-investor/rio-tinto-locks-out-800-wo...

You cannot have globalization, democracy, and national sovereignty. Theoretically you could have democracy and globalization but in an imperial dominated world, middle and small powers need to coalesce in mulitiateral insitutions to protect national sovereignty. Otherwise democracy becomes impossible.

I think the 2015 election will turn on Ontario. How is the province going to deal with fallout from the truncated industrial sector? The Cons have to be vulnerable. Which of the NDP candidates will fight to create a national transoportation company? Use the Canadian government power to limit corporate power? Who best understands how corporate power is exercised, and what are its limits? Who can address the concerns of people who are being asked to take wage cuts, abandon pensions, lose workplace benefits, and access to public services?

Those worries are not going away anytime soon, and neglect and indifference from Ottawa will make things worse for more people.

 

Yes, that was the point I was trying to make back in post #25 dc:

"Workers at the Caterpillar plant in London, Ontario, have voted to strike. Their situation puts in bold relief the positions being argued here on the eve of a new year, and the need to get it right.

The CAW situation at the London Cagterpillar plant as explained in the Canadian Press story:

"Members of the Canadian Auto Workers union say theyhave voted in favour of a strike at Canada's only locomotive manufacturing plant, owned by U.S.-based Caterpillar Inc.

"About 98 per cent of CAW Local 27 members voted to strike if necessary, at a meeting held Friday morning.

"The union, which represents some 650 production and skilled trades workers at the plant in London, Ont., has been negotiating with the heavy equipment giant since November in an effort to reach a new collective agreement that would replace a current six-month extension. The contract deadline is set for just before 12 a.m.Sunday.

"Caterpillar bought the London plant in June 2010, but within a year of the purchase three other locations in the U.S., Mexico and Brazil were slated to build locomotives.

"The CAW says the company's final offer would slash wages in half, result in drastic cuts to benefits and eliminate the pension plan - at a time when sales, profits and executive pay have soared to record highs.

"It has accused the company of purposely trying to put workers out of jobs in order to shift production to the U.S. or Mexico. The company could not immediately be reached for comment Friday.

"The union is concerned that Caterpillar may try to change the terms and conditions of employment once the collective agreement expires, but CAW national president Ken Lewenza said that if the terms and conditions remain, the employees will not strike. The CAW called on the federal government last week to review Cater;pillar's purchase of the plant back in 2010, saying the future of the plant and 800 jobs are in peril."

A political party is not likely to turn this situation around based on its virtue, but it can get damned smart and learn to play the game winningly. Before our manufacturing capacity is completely gutted, and while any sovereignty exists."

It didn't raise any concerns earlier, good luck in your effort at raising the alarm, dc.

Gaian

That's an accurate assessment, M.

writer writer's picture

And some of us know a bit about David Berlin, and consider the source. I hardly view critiques of his analysis of what happened in Quebec as looking for gnats. It would be handy if those of us outside of that province were more mindful about what we said about it. See: Cullen.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Howard wrote:

As for candidates dropping out, when I said that you should not be in the race if you don't think you can finish top 3, I imagined 5 candidates with each one thinking they had a chance of finishing top 3 and a couple coming up short. The fact of the matter is you are not a serious candidate if you cannot finish top 3. Furthermore, if you are not a serious contender, you start to look suspiciously like a vanity candidate.

 

There are several problems with that, Howard, not the least of which is that virtually any of the candidates have the capacity to finish in the top three.  Anyone who tells you that they can predict (with any confidence) who will be in the top three is, frankly, lying through their stinking teeth.  Few people are in any position to tell you the leadership standings today with any accuracy - ad most of those who could will spin you forty-seven ways from Sunday.

We are eleven weeks away from the convention.  Eleven weeks prior to the last federal election, the NDP was going to haemorrhage seats, principally to the Conservatives.  The Bloc was going to clean up in Quebec yet again.

Eleven weeks prior to the last SaskNDP leadership race, Ryan Meili's candidacy was a hopeless vanity exercise, while the Lingenfelter machine was steamrolling to a crushing first ballot win.

I don't care to listen to the prognostications of amateur soothsayers, nor to the handful of elitists who'd like to remove any candidate who isn't both white and Anglo-Saxon.  (After all, the bulk of this disgustingly elitist meme has attacked the Indian guy, the Sikh guy and the Greek girl.)

(No idea why that html spam got interpolated.)

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Hunky_Monkey wrote:
Malcolm wrote:

I don't care to listen to the prognostications of amateur soothsayers, nor to the handful of elitists who'd like to remove any candidate who isn't both white and Anglo-Saxon.  (After all, the bulk of this disgustingly elitist meme has attacked the Indian guy, the Sikh guy and the Greek girl.)

Let's be clear though... it's not because they're the "Indian guy, the Sikh guy and the Greek girl". I'd venture to guess there are people supporting them because of that though.

 

I'll concede that the elitism is not so overt as "let's get rid of the Indian guy, the Greek girl and the guy in the turban." 

I do think, however, that elites tend to be blind to their own biases.  (Actually, everyone in blind to their own biases, elites merely moreso.)  Some of the elites take these three less seriously because they operate outside the manner that elites expect.  This is especially true, I think, for Saganash.

I also think that un-self-aware elitism is part of the reason Paul Dewar keeps getting named as a top tier candidate by so  many people.  The Ottawa inside the bubble crown love him to death.  Since they love him in the Pariliamentary precint, surely he's on fire across the country, right?

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Let me try again, writer.  Quebec was not the point of the freaking article.  His point was about a cultural change in the NDP.  You and others chose to get exorcised over something that was ancilliary.

Slumberjack

Quote:
Jack's greatest accomplishment was changing the culture of the federal NDP from one of feckless self-righteousness to one of principled but pragmatic effectiveness.

Actually, the culture remains feckless and unprincipled, but it's certainly true that they've become stunningly effective in their pragmatism.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

FWIW, SkinnyDipper's online poll now has Ashton edging out Dewar to finish third on the second last ballot.  Mulcair has narrowed the final ballot to about 60 votes.

flight from kamakura

ouf.  to address a few things in a sort of drive-by fashion:

1) clearly, i'm on the left; equally clearly, i see the need for a more reasoned argument on trade.  let's renegotiate nafta/ftaa for sure, but how?  we'll start protecting this or that, but in exchange for what tariffs going up on what products that we sell?  if we reintroduce tariffs on foreign commodity x, we'll have to deal with seeing tariffs placed on canadian commodity y - what's the plan for that?  this is where the top tiers really do become clear: someone like mulcair or nash have an answer for that.  someone like topp might be able to put one together.  i'm not at all confident that any of the others do.  of the 2 who could step right up, i think mulcair is much, much better than nash.  'globalization' writ large is not necessarily bad - marx was in favor of free trade a hundred years ago as a levelling agent - but clearly, the global elite that dominates this government has no interest in ensuring that a global system advantages that many rather than their few cronies.  that's the way it has always worked, and that's the way it will continue to work until we get governments whose overriding aims and pre-occupations fall along the axis of social justice/community welfare.  we need to win power to change these things, coming in second - as we're learning - changes nothing.

2) ken s/gaian - ken s is way in the wrong.  this guy posts so frequently, and with such uninsighttful, confused and often incoherent (not to mention lengthy) posts, that gaian's fault was more in engaging in any significant way that engaging in a way counter to the forum rules.  ken s, no disrespect, but post half as much twice as clearly.  some of these threads, you contributed ~40% of the comments, to very little advantage to group knowledge.

3) cullen is an adventurer, he's charismatic, he has good work ethic, he's a team-first guy, and in a mulcair (or nash, however unlikely it is that she could beat harper) government, he'd make a great minor minister, sport maybe.  quebec people don't take the bloc quebecois as their organ, and being anti-bq probably won't register with most people in la belle province, so i think people oughtn't to worry about that.

4) back to baerlueer in the last thread, i'm not sure who you're hanging out with in montreal, my hometown and that i haven't visited in over a month, but i'm pretty sure it's not representative.  in the franco montreal/mile end/rosemont/cultural set that i live, i don't know a single ndp-leaning person who isn't supporting mulcair, not one.  i've personally signed up over a dozen left sovereignist-leaning types joining expressly to support mulcair.  and not because he's 'centrist'. 

5) finally, it's a shame what's going on with alcan and caterpillar, but there's no easy way out of it.  in the case of the latter, virtually every mechanism that we could conceivably use to penalize the company would result in a disfavorable outcome on aggregate.  in the former, labor could easily win were alcan to receive a gentle nudge from government, we just need the right government in there.

AnonymousMouse

I don't know anything about David Berlin, but I don't see why we should judge the annecdote he recounts based on his views or history. I take it only for what it is worth.

Arthur Cramer Arthur Cramer's picture

Well, going kind of off rhythm but in keeping with some comments in this thread, Rebecca Blakie did pretty well on CBC recently. I wish we would see more of her; especially given that stupid guy they have who is "NDP" form the Suma (Summa?) group, Robin Maclachlan.

AnonymousMouse

Malcolm wrote:

AnonymousMouse wrote:
Boom Boom wrote:

I thought there were definitely some unhelpful swipes in there, but the core anecdote about people wanting to vote with the "winners" even over the party that is and represents "losers" is insightful. I have seen this myself.

 

I think some poeple went looking for gnats to choke on and missed the point of the article which was that Jack's greatest accomplishment was changing the culture of the federal NDP from one of feckless self-righteousness to one of principled but pragmatic effectiveness.

At least, David Berlin and Wilf and you and I think of that as a great accomplishment.  Some in the party would like to dial it back.

(And, to relate this directly to the leadership matter, a lot of what I hear from Nash supporters makes me fearful of precisely that.)

The part attributed to Boom Boom was actually from me.

Bookish Agrarian

Malcolm wrote:

FWIW, SkinnyDipper's online poll now has Ashton edging out Dewar to finish third on the second last ballot.  Mulcair has narrowed the final ballot to about 60 votes.

Well it is worth about nothing as you can vote mulitiple times, one right after the other.    The next person who references it should have to donate $100 to the Conservatives as absolute punishment.

AnonymousMouse

KenS wrote:

Making the oil and gas industry pay its real costs is not a solution in itself to the loss of manufacturing jobs. Presumably, when [if] Mulcair issues a policy on that, he'll link to how his existing policies about the oil and gas industry will contribute to this yet to be announced or sketched out policy.

KenS: I think you may not be sufficiently familiar with the economics behind this policy. There is no further policy proposal required for what Mulcair is proposing to result in a direct increase in Canadian manufacturing and manufacturing jobs.

The issue at hand is NOT (as you suggested in a previous comment) that ending subsides and externalities would free up capital that COULD be put to use in the manufacturing sector. That's simply not the premise of the policy.

Here's an explanation of the economics:

Mulcair's hypothesis is that the Canadian dollar is currently overvalued because oil and gas subsides and the externalization of environmental costs allow for more oil and gas to be produced for export than current world prices would other make feasible. More oil and gas for export results in more demand for Canadian dollars to buy that oil and gas ,which in turn, drives up the price of the Canadian dollar.

Once you except that hypothesis, as I think we all do, the economic implications of ending the subsides and internalizing economic costs are so broadly accepted that economists from the Chicago School to outright Marxists would agree on the outcome.

If subsides and externalities are resulting in an excess production of oil and gas that would not occur if economic resources were allocate in an efficient manner and this, in turn, is resulting in increased demand for Canadians dollars that is artificially inflating the value of the dollar, then ending the subsides and internalizing the costs will result in a lower price for the Canadian dollar.

If the value of the Canadian dollar is lower, then the cost for Canadians to purchase goods manufactured in other countries becomes higher and the cost for people in other countries to buy goods manufactured in Canada becomes lower. In both cases it becomes cheaper for both Canadians and people in other countries to buy goods manufactured in Canada relative to prior economic conditions (when the subsides and externalities were in effect).

If the cost of purchasing goods manufactured in Canada is lower, then there will be more demand for goods manufactured in Canada.

If there is more demand for goods manufactured in Canada, more goods will be manufactured here.

Where the capital comes from to assist in manufacturing those goods is irrelevant. The point of the policy is that subsides and externalization of costs are artificially inflating the value of the dollar and artificially lowering demand for goods manufactured in Canada. Ending subsides and internalizing environmental costs in the oil and gas sector is the solution to that problem--full stop. It is not (fundmentally) about capital. This policy would have a direct and significant effect on the manufacturing sector.

(Of course, none of that is to say that we couldn't have other--unrelated--policies that would further help the manufacturing sector.)

Gaian

You raise hopes with messages like this, flight from k : "'globalization' writ large is not necessarily bad - marx was in favor of free trade a hundred years ago as a levelling agent - but clearly, the global elite that dominates this government has no interest in ensuring that a global system advantages that many rather than their few cronies. that's the way it has always worked, and that's the way it will continue to work until we get governments whose overriding aims and pre-occupations fall along the axis of social justice/community welfare. we need to win power to change these things, coming in second - as we're learning -changes nothing."

But we run up against the usual hesitancy from the folks whose interests we aim to protect/advance. Wee Jimmy Flaherty is already hauling back on the reins of banks that want to invest more abroad. Shouldn't we be advancing that idea first, and dangling that capital in front of homegrown entrepreneurs that will make items we can more likely manufacture to advantage at home?

Alcan and Caterpillar are more than a "shame," they are a horrifying spectre of an impoverished future for the grandkids.

Malcolm Malcolm's picture

Bookish Agrarian wrote:

Malcolm wrote:

FWIW, SkinnyDipper's online poll now has Ashton edging out Dewar to finish third on the second last ballot.  Mulcair has narrowed the final ballot to about 60 votes.

Well it is worth about nothing as you can vote mulitiple times, one right after the other.    The next person who references it should have to donate $100 to the Conservatives as absolute punishment.

 

Yes, BA, it is merely a curiosity.  However, all eight campaigns can game it, and so far it seems that most haven't bothered.  In the early days, the results suggested that maybe some Cullen and Dewar people were doing so.  Clearly the Topp people haven't bothered (or he's got far fewer people than conventional wisdom suggest).  Apart from Topp and (until recently) Mulcair doing so oorly, the results broadly seemed to reflect the conventional wisdom about who was i what tier.

I simply note that the standings had been fairly consistent over the last week or so, with Mulcair slowly eroding Nash's lead, but not much else shifting.  Today, curiously, Ashton falls to fifth on the first ballot (behind Cullen), but eventually surpasses both Cullen (on the third tally) and Dewar (on the fifth).

I'm not claiming it is evidence of Ashton's tremendous momentum, nor Mulcair's.  Heck, I said FWIW.  It is merely one more data point - possibly a less reliable data point than what was spun to David Akin, but perhaps not.

One other curiosity.  The thing is supposed to randomly rotate the order of the candidates, yet despite going to look more or less daily, I've never seen Ashton on the top of the ballot.  Anyone else notice anomalies like that?

KenS

I'm perfectly familiar with the economics behind what you all love Mulcair for.

The economics is obvious- it isnt the issue.

Economics: forcing the oil and gas industry to actually shoulder more of their costs will take some pressure off the loonie, which should in turn take some of the negative pressures off the manufacturing base companies.

But Mulcair is being touted as having a policy for the decline of the manufacturing base. No one is arguing that taking some of the pressure off the loonie is going to amount to enough of a policy. The policy centering on the oil and gas industry and its GHG emission contributions has some nice side benefits. Period.

The bottom line for us is politics.

Now obvious you can impress people around here with increasing the price of carbon emissions [we like] and the side benefit this has for manufacturers. But think of that as something you put on the public stage with people not predisposed to like everything the Leader of the NDP suggests. Is that a program that sells?

Can things be added to it? Sure. And Mulcair may well do that. But there is rah rah crowd here giving him credit for having done it already.

 

KenS

flight from kamakura wrote:

ken s, no disrespect, but post half as much twice as clearly.  some of these threads, you contributed ~40% of the comments, to very little advantage to group knowledge.

The critiicism  about me is accepted without reservation.

But I have a criticism in return.

When I get up to the highest percentage of the discussion is when it is me alone against the Mulcair cheerleading crowd.

You are selective about wordiness you see. The previous post I did before your comment is #63- which is way more than half a quote of Mulcair, second most is what has been claimed by people supporting Mulcair, lastly is me quickly criticising those claims.

Then we have post #80 by AM, who generally manages to rival me for wordiness and in this case outdoes me plus the quotations of Mulcair and others. But that's different I guess.

My just posted reply/clarification is not long for what it covers. But since I am engaging alone on the critics 'side' that puts me at saying more than any other single person.

Part of the problem here is that I am always focusing on the politics of what hits the road as policy, agendas, whatever. I get constant condescending statements or lectures that I dont understand the economics. Maybe I should start returning the favour by scolding about people not understanding the dynamic politics of the civic space that is unlike an introductory university seminar on economics.

mark_alfred

Does Mulcair have any support from any of Quebec's unions or labour organizations? 

ottawaobserver

Not that I know of, but he has several of the trade unionists in the new Quebec caucus, including Claude Patry up in the Saguenay, for example.

Winston

Happy new year everyone!

So are we starting 2012 by all piling on Gaian and KenS (where is Debater when we need him)?

AnonymousMouse

Quebec labour unions have never been affliated with the NDP, so I wouldn't expect any of them to endorse any candidate in an internal NDP leadership race.

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Mulcair''s website lists these two among his supporters:

Michael Fraser Former Executive Vice-President of the Canadian Labour Congress and former National Director of one of Canada's largest labour unions

Fraser says: "Tom understands that helping families make ends meet takes everything from investing in education and training, to respect for collective bargaining."

Wayne Samuelson Former OFL President and a titan of the Canadian labour movement

Samuelson says: "I've always known that Tom was a tremendous asset to our party, but I've also been impressed by his experience as an activist in the labour movement-as a labour lawyer, an executive member for one of Quebec's largest public service locals and even as a shop steward. I think that's a part of Tom's background that New Democrats are going to be interested to learn about."

writer writer's picture

Quote:

“But I want to really leave it to the members. I really need to have a mandate given to me by New Democrats to say that they're willing to get out of the bunkers, shake hands on some agreements together and make sure that we don't have a Conservative government again ... It would have to be driven from the grassroots. If they're into it, then I'm into it. If they're not, then we'll do it the old traditional way ... The real sticking point with the Bloc is that their fundamental purpose is to destroy the country. So to work with them in such an intimate way would be harmful to my view of Canada. I mean, they individually and many of their voters are progressive . Many of their voters came to us in the last election. But if the primary reason that the party exists is to dissolve Canada, then I can't count on sitting down with them for something like this."

— Nathan Cullen, transcribed from the video clip embedded in the news item linked to above

If I understand this correctly, Cullen is saying that his idea for cross-party cooperation is dependent on the desires of specific ridings and what they want to do. That it will be defined and "driven" by the grassroots. Except in Québec. Suddenly there, the we becomes the I. Becomes "my view" becomes "I can't count on sitting down with them ..."

So basically he's saying Quebecers can't be trusted. The province that honoured us with support to such a degree that we are now the Official Opposition? The province we're trying to gain membership from to mirror more closely what our standing is in the House of Commons? Those new grassroots, representing a potential new vision for what this project called Canada is all about, shaking all the old fights, all the old dynamics?

Can't. Be. Trusted.

At this point, unless he's able to backtrack big time, I am hoping he has a very, very poor showing come the convention. Because I really do not want Quebecers to get even a whiff that such a poison pill will be indulged by the rest of the country.

AnonymousMouse

Boom Boom wrote:

Mulcair''s website lists these two among his supporters:

Michael Fraser Former Executive Vice-President of the Canadian Labour Congress and former National Director of one of Canada's largest labour unions

Fraser says: "Tom understands that helping families make ends meet takes everything from investing in education and training, to respect for collective bargaining."

Wayne Samuelson Former OFL President and a titan of the Canadian labour movement

Samuelson says: "I've always known that Tom was a tremendous asset to our party, but I've also been impressed by his experience as an activist in the labour movement-as a labour lawyer, an executive member for one of Quebec's largest public service locals and even as a shop steward. I think that's a part of Tom's background that New Democrats are going to be interested to learn about."

As pointed out in an earlier thread, Mulcair has also been endorsed by Art Kube (sp?), the former President of the BC Federation of Labour.

Howard

I would add to what I wrote in response to KenS that Mulcair has also talked about more rigorously enforcing existing environmental regulation and points to his record as minister in Québec. This is part of his strategy to let some of the steam out of the "Dutch disease" (i.e. natural resource bubble) that he perceives. All of these added costs on the extraction side would also provide the economic argument for putting some more "value added" into the lesser amount of natural resource that would be shipped overseas. Take it as you will...

Also Malcolm, I wasn't expecting you to get defensive about my post about candidates dropping out, especially because I rank Ashton #5 (I like the number 5 for number of candidates), but I do think candidates do have some sense (at different points in the campaign) whether or not they might be able to pull off a top 3 finish. If the Ashton campaign think she has a serious shot at pulling off a top 3 finish, then she should stay in the hunt. Of course, the NDP is a bit of an odd fan club for moral victories...

Unionist

mark_alfred wrote:

Does Mulcair have any support from any of Quebec's unions or labour organizations? 

Start by asking whether any union in Québec supports the NDP...

 

Boom Boom Boom Boom's picture

Mulcair also supports the Lower Churchill, which surprised me, as I haven't seen that support discussed here - unless I missed it entirely in a previous thread. Or my memory is failing. Embarassed

Wilf Day

Unionist wrote:

Wilf, I'm not entirely sure what you saw as "worth reading" in this screed, but it was certainly a sobering way to start the New Year.

Quite right. My apologies. I only skimmed the shit at the end, which I agree poisons the whole piece. What I liked was how he started off about the party in 2000 and how Jack changed that:

Quote:
I learned not only about the NDPs Methodist past but the extent to which this religious thing trickled into the present. . . .Jack Layton put an end to all of that. He also put an end to the party's longtime bobbing for bronze. . . Jack made us all feel like winners. On his watch, the NDP left the old George Costanza posture far behind. . . Stephen Lewis who is undoubtedly one of Canada's greatest orators struck out for what he thought of as Jack's universal appeal. He chose to focus on Jack's commitment to social democracy, to caring and sharing, to the optimism that Jack's letter from Limbo articulated so well.

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/david-berlin/ndp-leader_b_960269.html

Wilf Day

ottawaobserver wrote:

Everyone needs to be selling memberships and keeping the new folks involved.

School starts January 9. We need mass media ads starting January 9. It was lovely to see the Trois-Rivières paper give our website a free mention, but how often has anyone seen that elsewhere?

Quote:

Il est possible de se procurer les cartes par internet au www.npd.ca, via l'association de circonscription ou par les députés néo-démocrates.

http://www.lhebdojournal.com/Actualites/Politique/2011-12-30/article-285...

AnonymousMouse

KenS wrote:

I'm perfectly familiar with the economics behind what you all love Mulcair for.

The economics is obvious- it isnt the issue.

Economics: forcing the oil and gas industry to actually shoulder more of their costs will take some pressure off the loonie, which should in turn take some of the negative pressures off the manufacturing base companies.

But Mulcair is being touted as having a policy for the decline of the manufacturing base. No one is arguing that taking some of the pressure off the loonie is going to amount to enough of a policy. The policy centering on the oil and gas industry and its GHG emission contributions has some nice side benefits. Period.

The bottom line for us is politics.

Now obvious you can impress people around here with increasing the price of carbon emissions [we like] and the side benefit this has for manufacturers. But think of that as something you put on the public stage with people not predisposed to like everything the Leader of the NDP suggests. Is that a program that sells?

Can things be added to it? Sure. And Mulcair may well do that. But there is rah rah crowd here giving him credit for having done it already.

 

KenS you are dramatically underestimating the impact that the oil-and-gas-related increase in the value of the Canadian dollar has had on the manufacturing sector.

Even during the early years of the economic crisis--when one would expect recession-related layoffs to be by far the number one cause of job losses--42% of all manufacturing jobs eliminated were actually lost due to the rise of the Canadian dollar. That's more than the crisis itself and more than increased labour cost competition from overseas (i.e. "globalization" in the typical sense of the term).

Addressing and reversing the single largest source of lost manufacturing jobs in Canada certainly qualifies as far more than "some nice side benefits".

http://www.thestar.com/opinion/article/751926--manufacturing-in-trouble-...

Furthermore, your earlier comments did not merely suggest that other policies are need to help the manufacturing sector in addition to the proposal Mulcair has already made. Rather you wrote: "Making the oil and gas industry pay its real costs is not a solution in itself to the loss of manufacturing jobs. Presumably, when [if] Mulcair issues a policy on that, he'll link to how his existing policies about the oil and gas industry will contribute to this yet to be announced or sketched out policy."

But addressing the high dollar IS a policy for addressing the loss of manufacturing jobs. There's no need to "link" it other policies or show how it "contributes" to other policies. It is a policy. Perhaps other policies are needed in addition to it, but that's a different question. And, besides, it's not like the NDP doesn't have other existing policies in this area. Those policies are largely reflected in the press releases put out by Nash, Dewar and Ashton.

I also take issue with the idea that anyone is giving Mulcair credit for something he hasn't done. Quite the contrary. Multiple posters on this board are discussing the proposal Mulcair has made and the economic rational for how it will create more manufacturing jobs. You are using dismissive and diminutive language such as "you all love Mulcair" and the "rah rah crowd" while denying what Mulcair has proposed.

In an earlier thread you repeatedly denied that Mulcair had proposed anything new even after a backgrounder was posted by someone showing he had proposed to include "all major emission sources" in a cap and trade plan rather than only large final emitters.

You've claimed as recently as this thread that "there is a large body of existing policy which [Mulcair] is drawing on, even though he never says that is where it comes from" despite the fact that in earlier threads I repeatedly showed that Mulcair explicitly said in his press release that he was proposing "a new 'comprehensive cap and trade plan' that would BUILD ON the popular proposal New Democrats campaigned on during the last election".

He has made a new proposal. Stop denying it. He has said he's drawing on existing policy. Stop denying it.

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

In this thread you claimed that this was not a policy for dealing with the loss of manufacturing jobs. Now you seem to admit that it is a policy for dealing with the loss of manufacturing jobs, but you question what impact it would have (e.g. "side beenefits").

If you had simply acknowledge the black and white truth that what Mulcair has proposed is in fact a policy for dealing manufacturing job losses in the first place and questioned whether the policy is sufficient--rather than denying there was a policy proposal and engaging in a lot of hand waving--we would have much sooner been able to tel you that Mulcair's plan actually addresses the #1 cause of manfacturing job in Canada. Taking the over the top position of denying thsat there is a policy doesn't really serve to move the conversation along.

You wrote above in response to flight from kamakura that you are frequently the only poster here responding to Mulcair supporters. But in reality you have frequently written inaccurate posts denying what Mulcair has said or done during this campaign and engaging in vague critiques implying that Mulcair has uniquely failed to address some pressing concern without explaining in any coherent or specific way what that concern is.

Rather than Mulcair supporters shilling for their candidate as you imply is the case, you seem obsessed with creating the appearence that Mulcair fails to live up to some imaginary standard.

I for one don't mind length, but try being clearer and much more specific.

Brian Glennie

KenS wrote:

flight from kamakura wrote:

ken s, no disrespect, but post half as much twice as clearly.  some of these threads, you contributed ~40% of the comments, to very little advantage to group knowledge.

The critiicism  about me is accepted without reservation.

But I have a criticism in return.

When I get up to the highest percentage of the discussion is when it is me alone against the Mulcair cheerleading crowd.

You are selective about wordiness you see. The previous post I did before your comment is #63- which is way more than half a quote of Mulcair, second most is what has been claimed by people supporting Mulcair, lastly is me quickly criticising those claims.

Then we have post #80 by AM, who generally manages to rival me for wordiness and in this case outdoes me plus the quotations of Mulcair and others. But that's different I guess.

My just posted reply/clarification is not long for what it covers. But since I am engaging alone on the critics 'side' that puts me at saying more than any other single person.

Part of the problem here is that I am always focusing on the politics of what hits the road as policy, agendas, whatever. I get constant condescending statements or lectures that I dont understand the economics. Maybe I should start returning the favour by scolding about people not understanding the dynamic politics of the civic space that is unlike an introductory university seminar on economics.

 

Ken, (and Libby, too) please just shut up!

 

 

Brian Glennie

Or else.

KenS

@AM, Now you and I would not be the judge of what is too long, would we?

This is not a main point, but I think we need to put to bed whether there is anything new in Mulcair's recently announced cap and trade policy. This is actually bizarre, because I see no need to extend beyond the existing 5 year old NDP policy. You keep drawing on a skimpy little backgrounder that says very little. There is a sentence where it says extending what cap and trade applies to in "existing legislation". You say he is expanding on the existing NDP policy. But why then does the news release say "existing legislation". Legislation = the government's limited caap and trade. The NDP's policy is not legislation.

This is bizarre because we dont need extending the existing NDP cap and trade policy. What we need is for the NDP to do more than wave it around, saying "cap and trade is better", or now that the government has a cap and trade plan "more cap and trade is better".

If Mulcair wants to tell NDP members that under him our cap and trade policy will get more prominence, he'll certainly have my attention... even without any more than that.

You have not established AM that Mulcair has said he is expanding our cap and trade policy. But this is crazy, because our policy does not need extension.

Since it's related, viz the comment by Howard- I'm not and would not question Mulcair's credentials as an environmentalist.

KenS

I dont need to be sold that the oil sands effect on the Canadian dollar causes bleeding in manufacturing sector- and even in the export of raw materials with little or no value added processing that could be called 'manufacturing'.

The question is whether talking about this counts as policy or any kind of political 'instrument' that has to do with dealing with the hollowing out of [largely eastern] manufacturing jobs.

Mulcair talking about it and the EDF writing articles does not give the link political traction. We dont like the oil sands anyway, so we are hardly critical judges of how much linkage there really is. There is some linkage is good enough for us. Not so for the people whose jobs are on the line.

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