When Stephen Harper made his snap election call official last Sunday, rabble.ca was right there ready to dissect every cynical step of the PM’s campaign with the launch of our special federal election blog.
As soon as the writ was dropped, our team of more than 20 commentators from across the country began weighing in with critical analysis of Harper’s ads, a look at the Canadian Obama factor, assessment of the economy and calls to urgent action. One blogger summarized the range of Harper’s cuts across the board.
But our bloggers didn’t let the other leaders and parties off the hook either. A number of bloggers took issue with the NDP’s initial support of excluding Green leader Elizabeth May from the debates. Stephane Dion’s “Green Shift” policies got mixed reviews, including the accusation that the carbon tax proposal was being “swiftboated.” On the environmental front, the NDP got good marks for the proposal to halt the expansion of Alberta’s tar sands.
From the first day of the campaign, rabble’s bloggers noticed that the war was not being presented as a central issue. Also missing in the action of the campaign? Women, who remain poorly represented as candidates in all parties, to varying degrees.
Stay tuned to rabble’s federal election blog and join in the discussion and debates with your comments. The posts are coming fast and furious, so check in everyday to keep up with our opinionated and insightful team of bloggers.
To help get the word of our progressive election analysis out there, rabble.ca is introducing the rabble rouser, a weekly print version of our federal election blog that spreads the reach of this coverage offline and beyond the Web. The project has been developed by Greg Macdougall, an Ottawa-based media activist.
The idea is simple. Make a PDF version of the election blog content available on a regular basis, and get the word out that it’s there for people to print off, make copies of, and distribute as they – you! – see fit.
We’re working with unions and other networks to get some of the printing done, but the most effective means of getting it out there is by a means of decentralized distribution – large numbers of people printing off varying numbers of copies, and distributing them themselves.
So we ask you to seriously consider doing this – check out the PDF, and ask yourself if you want others to see these opinions, to be aware that there is this alternative media coverage of the election. Do you think this is a project worth contributing to?
If so, print the two pages, make some double-sided copies, and you’re well on your way. After that, all you need is to work up the nerve to approach others with this ‘progressive propaganda’: maybe strike up a conversation with someone you know, maybe go door-to-door in your neighbourhood, maybe stand on the street corner, or you could post copies up in different places or just leave a few copies in the coffee shop or waiting room.With your help and participation, the federal election blog and the rabble rouser will be able to reach even more Canadians with critical and progressive coverage of this campaign.