Please excuse the backwards ordering of my response to your post, but it seems to fit better content-wise.
If that's what the NDP has become - and they can't fight the media narrative without buying into it - it's a sign of terminal disease. The disease that comes from counting votes and divorcing yourself from the real movements of real people. With that disease comes internal dictatorship and bullying and suppression of critics and dissenters. A party like that is headed for doom. People deserve better.
I agree, especially with the bolded part.
And I misspoke when I said "seniors". I meant workers. Like, ALL WORKERS - the ones who hope to live long enough to retire. So, retirement security is about ensuring the means of existence for the majority of people in the society. It's not some charitable looking-after-the-less-fortunate-margins thing, which is how I read your references to "the poor, the mentally ill, seniors, children". It is the workers who create every scrap of wealth in the world, and we are the ones who want to, and must, "help" everyone financially. We don't need some phony do-gooder like Horwath watching over our precious "tax dollars", as if they're ours to hoard and the needy must pry them from our greedy hands.
I don't know anyone who self-identifies as a worker. I know lots of people with jobs who work very hard. I know lots of people who are just scraping by, paycheque to paycheque. And I know lots of people who are underemployed, who would love to get to the paycheque to paycheque point.
But none of these people self-identify as "workers". To me, talking about "workers" is as out of touch as talking about "working families", "ordinary Canadians", or "average people".
People think they are more than their jobs. I'll grant that maybe they are deluded, or short-sighted. They self-identify as many things, but not workers. Where people are trained to do a certain job, they might identify themselves that way--as a teacher, a computer programmer, a plumber or an artist. But not a worker.
I agree that you've identified the people to focus on, but the language is not at all inclusive. Everyone is so much more than a worker.
I get that in one sense being a worker is a source of pride, and that's the context you are using it in. I'd say that's buying into some right wing framing as well--ie. that we should reward those who are producing, and that the number of jobs available define who can be considered a worker (and therefore productive and deserving).
For some, being called a "worker" would be insulting (even if the label fits). For some, the label "worker" implies that they are being looked at as simply a means to an end for society.
Additionally, talking about how workers create every scrap of wealth leaves some openings for a different perspective once that is no longer the case. Automation is rendering more and more jobs obsolete. California's going to be licensing self-driving cars on their roadsin the near future. How will that affect taxi drivers and truck drivers? What happens when robots become better workers in most fields? The model breaks down.
Don't oversimplify her betrayal, please. She hasn't got a single word to say about workers - the majority of the society - people who work for a living. What "Smokey" Martin and others of his ilk call "average people". So where's her plan to make it easier for workers to get organized, fight their battles and win? Both in the workplace, and the community, and in the political realm? Missed it. I guess the "media narrative" would describe that as too radical?
I think she is offering policies for workers. I think the corporate tax increase is one, and I think it's not hard to find more things that would be an improvement for workers. It's one thing to talk about workers, it's another thing to have policies that would help them. You're implying that one equates to the other.
Making it easier for workers to organize would be good in terms of policy, but I don't think there's much political advantage. It's just not how people under 40 view the workplace or unions. The last time I heard about workers in Ontario trying and failing to organize was at Carleton University, and it's still not clear to me who's at fault there.
For most under 40, I'd say tenants' unions would be more relevant than workers' unions.
I know that most of the rights that we have as workers come from union organizing. I wish more people understood this. But even that is an appeal rooted in the past. For people to viewunions as relevant, they need to be relevant today.
There has been a coordinated effort by the money powers to wreck unions. There's also been a coordinated effort to wreck the NDP. But beyond that, unions have become institutionalized (much like the NDP), and have been on the defensive (much like the NDP).
I think a good amount of dissatisfaction I feel with the NDP (not inclusive or welcoming to new people, not willing to push a bolder social services platform, not willing to take the environment or climate change seriously, sticking with a growth-based economy) are partly a result of the union influence on the party. This is just my opinion but it is an honest one.
From my perspective, it is the union representation that is pushing for a more centrist agenda in the NDP. I don't think this is controversial, and of course we can see in Ontario that much union support had gone to the Liberals over the last decade. There are still plenty of unions supporting the Liberals this election, as you have pointed out.
The NDP isn't bold enough to be worth supporting, so instead the much worse (status quo) Liberals get the support. Doesn't make sense to me.