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CuriosityCat: Will Canada have a snap election over new anti-terrorist laws and ISIS?

Big Brother is watching …

There is a clear fault line between the two opposition parties, and PM Stephen Harper’s policies with regard to how to combat ISIS. 

The Conservatives favour actual fighting (planes dropping bombs etc.), while the opposition parties are against this. 

The NDP is further from the government’s position, while the Liberal Party would have Canadian armed forces join the anti-ISIS coalition led by the US and help its efforts (including transporting goods for the coalition), but short of Canadian planes dropping bombs on ISIS targets. Now another fault line has appeared: the Conservatives want (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Will Canada have a snap election over new anti-terrorist laws and ISIS?

CuriosityCat: Why is Justin Trudeau dancing to victory?

Heather Malleck in the Toronto Star has a few good reasons why our next Prime Minister will be named Justin Trudeau:

But what makes some politicians attractive and others repellent?

Trudeau is intelligent, humane and self-confident, a Québécois who is devoted to Canadian unity and has the most marvellous family: a sophisticated career-minded wife, Sophie Grégoire, and three adorable young children with the interesting names that only confident parents bestow: Xavier James, Ella-Grace and Hadrien. He has an English degree from McGill, a UBC teaching degree and taught for several years. He has his father’s intellect and wit, while being (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Political generational shift

“Shake hands with the nice man. First, I’ll take his job, and then later, when you’re all grown up, you can take mine!”

CuriosityCat: Congratulations to Susan Delacourt

Susan Delacourt

Susan Delacourt neatly sums up the state of play in Canadian politics in her article in the Toronto Star:

In that same vein, we have been told repeatedly that Canadians want people in power who are “good managers” of the economy, but what about being a good manager of democracy? Doesn’t that entail a commitment to keeping citizens involved and (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Congratulations to Susan Delacourt

CuriosityCat: Byelections: Thomas Mulcair’s NDP In Denial Phase

Mulcair in denial

Four byelections, and a thumping for the NDP, but that party is still refusingto face up to reality (my bolding):

Mulcair said the NDP needs to run campaigns that go beyond strictly local matters and focus on broader “kitchen table” issues, such as gas prices, ATM fees and transit, which are of concern to many Canadians of different political stripes.

“When we head into the general (election), we’re going to be broadening from where we are,” he said.

The NDP leader said Cressy got strong support from the party base, but the “mathematics of the vote” (Read more…)

The Scott Ross: Wikipedia’s Entry On Momentum

Political momentum is nothing like the momentum of physics. In the world of Newton and Einstein appearances don’t cause forces, whereas in politics, appearances are forces.

Stephen Harper became Leader of the Conservative Party in 2003, he faced two subsequent general elections before finally winning a minority government in 2006. Up until 2011 his Conservative Party only increased the number of seats it held in Parliament; since then however, the Conservative Party has only seen its numbers decline.

Thomas Mulcair became Leader of the NDP in 2012, under his guidance the New Democrats have faced numerous by-elections and instead of (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Harper’s new Conservatives out of step with Canadian values

Harper Norquist: Ideological soulmates

Many feared (and fear) Stephen Harper’s hidden agenda, and for good reason. Patterned on the far right wing Republican model, Harper’s Reform Party took over the old Progressive Conservative Party in a semi-hostile merger, and has systematically set about implementing the strategy of Norquist Grover. Grover’s gift to modern politics is the single-minded drive to remove the central government from the public space in the USA. His means is simple: starve the government by cutting back its revenues, so that it becomes weak enough to drown in the bathtub. Here in Canada, Harper has worked diligently (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Harper’s new Conservatives out of step with Canadian values

CuriosityCat: Abortion: Why Trudeau’s decision on pro-choice candidates is a good one

Justin Trudeau: Decisive

Ever since Justin Trudeau’s team came out with the announcement that anti-abortion supporters need not bother to run as candidates for the nomination of Liberal MPs in the coming election, the right wing has had a field day trying to make hay out of this single straw. Take the absurdity that Robyn Urback wrote in the National Post, as an example:

What twaddle. The Liberal Party supports the Supreme Court decision regarding a woman’s right to choose. Fullstop. So why not expect potential candidates to do the same in order to run for nomination? The Liberal Party (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Abortion: Why Trudeau’s decision on pro-choice candidates is a good one

CuriosityCat: Ontario election: Shades of the 2015 Harper-Trudeau battle?

When it comes to elections in Canada, with its relatively low voting rates, age matters. Older folks vote with their feet, all the way to the polling stations, while younger folks go about their busy lives, voicing discontent but not doing anything about it. Federally, the Stephen Harper new Conservatives have made consistent inroads into the demographics that vote – they have solid ties to older Canadians. The NDP, under Layton and also the more volcanic Mulcair, appeal to younger voters, as do the Liberals. What’s happening in the June 2014 provincial election in our biggest province gives us clues (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: A Liberal Party Mess in the Making

A man of principle

This is a mess. Justin Trudeau and his advisors had better get on to this debacle post haste, reveal all the facts and communications, and make sure the principle of open nominations is adhered to. If we start retreating from opennes and transparency before the election is here, we will not form the next government. And congratulations to Zach Paikin for taking a principled stand (my underlining): But a letter sent to Innes by Liberal national election readiness chief David MacNaughton and obtained by the CBC has suggested the move may have been driven by a (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Election 2015: The Crossing of the Curves

Andre Turcotte – the Curves Tracker

Sometimes a picture is really worth a thousand words, much to the consternation of the conservatives huddled in Ottawa for the annual Manning Centre rightwing navel-gazing gathering.  Pollster Turcotte presented a series of graphs showing what a poll of a thousand Canadians today think about the (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Election 2015: The Crossing of the Curves

CuriosityCat: Stephen Harper’s Achilles heel: Trust

The latest Angus Reid poll highlights the Achilles heel of Prime Minister Stephen Harper: Most Canadians do not trust him to protect our elections, as Susan Delacourt points out. This is a stark finding of the Angus Reid poll: The views of an increasingly larger number of Canadians have hardened about Harper’s likeability, trustworthiness, and fitness to lead the country. And this swift, dark and deadly undercurrent is what will ensure that this is his last term as prime minister of Canada. . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Stephen Harper’s Achilles heel: Trust

CuriosityCat: Canada: A Simple Election Law (“SEL”)

At the Montreal convention, the Liberal Party overwhelmingly agreed to Priority Resolution 31, Restoring Trust in Canada’s Democracy. An important part of that resolution is this: AND BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED THAT immediately after the next election, an all-Party process be instituted, involving expert assistance and citizen participation, to report to Parliament within 12 months with recommendations for electoral reforms including, without limitation, a preferential ballot and/or a form of proportional representation, to represent Canadians more fairly and serve Canada better. Electoral reform has a bad record of success in Canada, with several referenda for modernizing our antiquated and undemocratic (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Liberal Party Convention: The Most Important Policy Resolution

In my view, the single most important policy resolution at this week’s convention in Montreal is the prioritized number 31, which should significantly reduce our democratic deficits. That resolutionreads: 31. Priority Resolution: Restoring Trust in Canada’s Democracy* BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Liberal Party pursue political reforms which promote: Open, democratic nominations of candidates; Fewer “whipped” votes in Parliament and more “free” votes requiring individual MPs to assume full responsibility for their decisions; Stronger Parliamentary control over public finances, including an annual deadline for the budget; accounting consistency among the Estimates and the Public Accounts; more clarity in voting (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Justin Trudeau’s Culture Code for Canadians: Keeping it, with Fun

Dr. Clotiere Rapaille

Within 18 months of so Canadians will elect a new prime minister and a new government. Of the three contenders for the top job – Stephen Harper, Thomas Mulcair and Justin Trudeau – which one offers Canadians a leader best in tune with what Canadians really, really want in their leader, deep down in the innermost recesses of their hearts?

Because if you are a leader offering them something else, that does not fit that deepest desire, you will not be the next prime minister. So what do Canadians want in their prime minister? Dr Clotaire Rapaille (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Canada, want a good Deputy Prime Minister? Look for the man with the hardball in his office

Two of these men could be PM in the next 18 months

Thomas Mulcair says he and his NDP have learned from the disasterous provincial NDP election: “It’s not enough to look at the electorate and say, ‘vote for me, I m good.’ You have to say, ‘vote for me, I’m a good person to replace the party that’s there, and the government has to be replaced for the following reasons.’ “And I don’t think they did a good enough job of defining what those reasons were.” Mulcair, who keeps a scuffed-up hardball on a table behind (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Why Stephen Harper will call an early election in spring 2014

George S. Patton

I expect the Throne Speech in late January 2014 to be the timing for Prime Minister Stephen Harper to dissolve Parliament and call for an election in the spring of 2014, rather than wait for the legislated October 2015 date. The Liberal Party under Justin Trudeau are targeting a spring election a year later: “We’re building a (campaign) approach that’s very much flexible. I think one of the aims we’re working at is spring of 2015,” he said, noting that Harper has ignored his own law in the past. Paul Wells in his Macleans article, (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Why Stephen Harper will call an early election in spring 2014

Trashy's World: The issues for the 2015 election…

1) The various CPC scandals…. 2) The issue that, if the Grits are smart, will win them a majority: stopping the phasing out of home mail delivery No wonder Harper wanted the House to rise early. Justin should send him a note of thanks for this ready-made election platform plank! (1) Trashy, Ottawa, Ontario

CuriosityCat: 2015: The ballot question in Canada’s next election?

Methinks John Ivison has hit the nail right on its head with this:

If the Auditor-General’s report does suggest a systemic problem of corruption and abuse, who would bet against the Conservatives using the Senate as a classic wedge issue, pointing out that the Liberals are in favour of preserving the country’s most expensive eventide home as is.

One approach could (Read more…)

. . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: 2015: The ballot question in Canada’s next election?

CuriosityCat: Management of Economy is Achilles Heel of Liberals and Dippers

Three stewards a-waiting …

The latest IPSOS-Reid poll shows that the Harper new Tories maintain their lead amongst voters when it comes to the critical issue of who is the best choice to manage the country’s economy. Voters believe that Harper and his Conservatives are the best by a whopping margin:

But the Conservatives continue to lead the way on economic issues. Among voters who said the economy is the most important issue, 45 per cent believe the Conservatives are the best economic policy managers, followed by 28 per cent who chose the Liberals and 14 per cent who chose the (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Management of Economy is Achilles Heel of Liberals and Dippers

CuriosityCat: Thomas Mulcair’s NDP: Butting Heads against a Brick Wall

Consider for a moment two facts.

One, the NDP is sinking in the polls, with the tide that started ebbing with Layton’s passing still receding from the distant shoreline of possible government. And two, the old saying that the definition of insanity is to keep doing the same thing, hoping for a different result. With Trudeau Junior at the helm of the Liberal Party of Canada, the polls have shown a slight decrease in support for Stephen Harper’s new Tories, a big uptick in Liberal fortunes, and a steady decline in those favouring the Dippers.  That’s the background. And (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: Stéphane Dion: Let our MPs take a pocketful of votes to Parliament

A pocketful of votes

Dion gave an interesting talk at Joyce Murray’s meeting in Vancouver this morning, dealing with the different kinds of electoral reform that we could adopt. One new idea that he dropped on the table is interesting, and, I believe, novel: that our MPs votes in Parliament be counted in an entirely different way than they are now. In the past Dion has proposed his P3 variant of proportional representation, which might work well. His new idea is intriguing: let our MPs take a pocketful of votes to Parliament. It works this way. We use his (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: The most plausible reason for the NDP loss in BC

Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion in BC

I think Gordon Gibson’s take in the Globe & Mail on the vote-shifting caused by the position-shifting of Dix in the last week of the campaign is the most plausible explanation of why the polls were so different from the actual results:

The NDP looked way ahead before voters went to the polls in British Columbia. Then it all changed. Why? One word: “Pipelines.” Or more precisely, two: “Kinder Morgan.”

Until two weeks ago it was the election of the NDP’s Adrian Dix to lose. 

Then he got greedy. Worried (Read more…)

CuriosityCat: The Harper Government lacks a strategic vision for Canada’s oil industry

400 parts per million …

Those Albertans who have voted for Harper’s Conservatives in election after election must be starting to wonder whether Stephen Harper and his Cabinet are the best choice for their main industry: oil. They should start to worry, because the Harper Tories are displaying yet again their incompetence when it comes to the really important issues facing Canada. They are fine for scurrying around, giving out little slices of taxpayers’ money to selected micromarkets, but when it comes to the really important things, they are sadly wanting.

The Meltdown Debacle Take the financial meltdown of 2007-2008. 

(Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: The Harper Government lacks a strategic vision for Canada’s oil industry

Politics Canada: Trudeau ends hope for Canada with decision not to fight attack ads

I am in complete and utter shock and sadness at the news that Justin Trudeau will become the third Liberal Party leader in a row defined by the formidable Reform-Conservative attack ad machine. This means that Stephen Harper has just won the 2015 election campaign.

I can not believe that this decision could be taken. Those who do not learn from their mistakes are bound to repeat them and we all have a front row seat to the obliteration of another leader’s brand. This will be very painful indeed.