Québec solidaire - the thread

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swallow wrote:

The point of the merger was to try to eat the PQ's lunch. Tactically it may be working - Jean-Talon by-election today saw QS at 21% (third place) and PQ down to just 9% of the vote. 

That Fidler piece is very useful. Another point to pull out:

The framework law will provide for negotiations with the First Nations and Inuit people, guaranteeing “their right to self-determination during the process of accession to independence.” Pending the results of these negotiations, Quebec will claim the continuity of its existing territory.

Worth pointing out that Quebec's "existing territory" is mostly stolen - same as with Canada. The QS stance here is colonialist. 

I'm uncomfortable with some of the directions QS is taking in recent months. But your comment is thought-provoking. QS is saying (as far as I can see) that while Québec can accede to independence based on a decision of Quebecers alone (irrespective of what Ottawa etc. want) - a position I support (because that's what self-determination means) - there will be no fragmentation of Québec except as a result of negotiations with Indigenous peoples. It does sound hypocritical - maybe your descriptor "colonialist" is the right one.

Unless I'm misreading their statement. Are they saying that unless both sides agree to some final contract/treaty/settlement, then Indigenous people will not be "allowed" to exercise their right to self-determination? For example, if negotiations break down with no finality?

Another question: What concrete stance do you think QS should take on this matter (beyond words of recognition, etc.)?


I think we'll have to hammer it out with Indigenous peoples and movements. There is a committee of Indigenous QS members now, but discussions must go far beyond that and require concrete support for Indigenous demands and movements.

Remember that many Québécois on the left view themselves as both colonisers (settlers) and colonised. This not the exception in the American continent; where all the countries south of the US have also been subjected to US colonisation (including stealing great swaths of land from Mexico, including most of fertile California) and political, economic and military interference, at times invasions. It has taken the left south of the US quite a while to understand the magnitude of Spanish or Portuguese (or at times Dutch, English, French etc) colonialism's impact on indigenous peoples, including massacres and sometimes outright genocide.

There is no easy answers, and not all the Indigenous nations have the power rights won through the James Bay negotiations to be able to live in full economic and social autonomy.

I'm not particularly happy with the recent course of QS either, but at least Fidler's piece is far more nuanced than most. One thing I'm absolutely NOT worried about is how Catherine Dorion was targeted for her dress, after Manon Massé for her dress and gender ambiguity. Diversity is not just a matter of skin colour, national origin or biological gender. In general Manon is taken very seriously now, though she still has to put up with a lot of shit. And MNA Dorion, as well as Andrés Fontecilla, have done a lot to defend the international students the CAQ planned to stab in the back.


Solidaire lost ground in this byelection. Disaffected PQ and Liberal voters all went to the CAQ and Greens. The fusion deal with Option National was a miscalulation. It's interesting that the only time that NDPQ and Option National ever appeared on the same ballot (in a byelection) the NDPQ had 5 times the support of ON.


Polling stations: 158 / 158
Candidate and affiliation     %     Votes     Leading

Joëlle Boutin
(C.A.Q.-É.F.L.)    43.38    9,950    4,208
Gertrude Bourdon
(P.L.Q./Q.L.P.)    25.03    5,742    
Olivier Bolduc
(Q.S.)    16.95    3,888    
Sylvain Barrette
(P.Q.)    9.32    2,137    
Emilie Coulombe
(P.V.Q./G.P.Q.)    2.79    640    
Éric Barnabé
(P.C.Q./C.P.Q.)    1.02    233    
Ali Dahan
(Ind)    0.90    206    
Stéphane Blais
(C.P.Q.)    0.37    85    
Michel Blondin
(P.I.Q.)    0.14    32    
Stéphane Pouleur
(É.A.)    0.10    23   

swallow swallow's picture

Yeah, my mistake, I read a piece last niht that showed QS at 21%, but the final numbers don't look good. Of course, quite a change from the last by-election when the PQ was a force in Jean-Talon. But it does seem that the momentum is fading. 

I agree with what you're saying Unionist. The key, to me, would be to accept that self-determination includes land rights, including to traditional territories -- which is the key in, for instance, BC as well. And to accept that no change in political status quo may occur without the consent of the traditional landowners - especially given that there are almost no treaties in Quebec and all land is unceded.

But that would be poison to the sovereignty-first crowd.

How about a pledge to reserve a pledge of government revenues for the people who did not cede their land? Imagine what that could do for the Innu on the north shore, or the Mikmaq in Gaspesie, or the Abenaki or Malecite, or the Naskapi in their resource-rich lands.

But this, too, would be poison for the sovereignty-first crowd. The only solution I can see is to ditch the sovereignty-first line, but I can't see how the party can do that post-merger. 


wrong thread


This is why it is such a stupid move to focus on sovereignty. While some QS members might accept indigenous sovereignty the referendums were run on the assumption that Quebec's borders were sacrosanct. During the last referendum indigenous peoples were ignored but since then they have become much more high profile so can't be ignored. Now the activists of QS see the contradiction between insisting on so-called self-determination for "Quebecers" but not for indigenous peoples but see no contradiction in not allowing Montreal self-determination no matter the size of our population. 

QS/ON is failing. Hardline separatists, which is the vote QS is now going for, support Bill 21, and will not support indigenous sovereignty over Quebec land. Separatists, sovereignists, and nationalists are a minority and hopelessly fragmented. Of all the parties in Quebec CAQ probably comes closest to satisfying at least some Quebecers. Their approach is independence by stealth. 

We are back to choosing between CAQ and Liberals as the only two viable parties. Our only hope is the NDPQ and it is a very faint one. 

The only hope for a party like QS is if it truly represents the people or at least the interests of the people. QS does not represent the people nor their interests. QS represents people who think Canada is a monopoly game they can just quit upon winning an election like waving a magic wand. QS has been taken over by ON the same way the Progressive Conservatives have been swallowed by Reformers. The face may appear the same but it is a different party.

I wish all of our representatives were independents who represented their constituents instead of their political parties. 


We are back to choosing between CAQ and Liberals as the only two viable parties. Our only hope is the NDPQ and it is a very faint one.

The leader of the NDPQ only had 54% support in the last vote of members and he just decided he's staying, talk about ego. If barely 50% of the NDP supports its own leader, they don't have a faint hope, they have no hope. Also they support Bill 21, they're not a progressive party and NDP supporters should not support the NDPQ just because of branding.

As far as I'm concerned the only hope is a new party whose focus is on the expansion of rights for all rather than the continued contraction of rights (that means repealing Bill 21, holding an inquiry on systemic racism in Quebec and a revamp of loi 101 which focuses more on positive actions to promote the french language rather than the current orientation of punishing the use of english. A good concrete example of actually promoting the french language was proposed by Greg Kelley which would make french courses available for free to all, rather than just immigrants which is currently the case.)