Prog Blog’s Flickr Photostream

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how Brad Wall’s casino sell-off gambit might provoke a needed discussion of Saskatchewan’s relationship with First Nations – even while highlighting that Wall himself isn’t up for the public consultation needed to make that process work.

For further reading…- The original casino story was broken by the NDP caucus here, and subsequently reported on here.   – SOS Crowns weighs in on Wall’s desire to sell off Saskatchewan’s casinos (and anything else that isn’t locked down through the NDP’s Crown preservation legislation). – And lest anybody think the Sask Party considers its standard practices to (Read more…)

Canadian Political Viewpoints: Accentuate the Positive

I’ve been giving a lot of thought on what to talk next about on the blog, and with news of the Saskatchewan Party’s newest round of attack ads, I thought that would be a good place to start. But first, we need to have a small detour before we discuss attack ads themselves.

Recently, Brian Topp had a memo come out about what he felt went wrong with the British Columbia provincial election. As many of you are likely aware, the BC NDP led the polls for months, and then stumbled at the finish line as the BC Liberals were (Read more…)

Canadian Political Viewpoints: An Abstract Posting

On a random side note, I’ve decided to close down the Canadian Political Philosophy blog; I’ve had enough delays in dealing with this blog, and the other one was a bit too time consuming to keep going. Perhaps I’ll change my mind, but if not, the issues talked about there will find their forum here as well.

Now that I’m back in Saskatoon, and at my preferred blogging computer again, I hope that the blog will pick up speed again. I know there’s some things we should be talking about (Syria, the Senate, the new constituency riding boundaries, and Cam (Read more…)

Canadian Political Viewpoints: The "Rebel" Alliance

Perhaps I’m a bit late to the party, but this is an issue that I wanted to spend a bit of time talking about since it was mentioned.

In the past few weeks, an issue that wasn’t on anyone’s radar made its way to the forefront of everyone’s minds when Cam Broten rose in the legislature to ask the Premier and the Minister of Education about the existence of Gay-Straight Alliances (GSAs) in Saskatchewan schools. Brad Wall gave the standard right wing boiler plate warning of ensuring religious tolerance and freedoms were protected, while Russ Marchuk has tried to say (Read more…) there is currently no legislation that prevent GSAs from being formed in schools across Saskatchewan.

Brad Wall further embarrassed himself, and Cam Broten rightly called him out on it, when in the media scrum afterwards the Premier seemed unable to bring himself to even say the word ‘gay’.

. . . → Read More: Canadian Political Viewpoints: The "Rebel" Alliance

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Lana Payne offers an introduction to austerity for Newfoundland and Labrador residents who are just learning about it on a provincial level: In Canada, Prime Minister Stephen Harper has also taken a rather deep liking to austerity.

It is a ready-made excuse to gut government and change the positive role it should play in our lives, in building a better society, in sharing economic wealth and mitigating the inequality gap.

It is another excuse to trash government as a catalyst to build opportunities for all citizens; another excuse to turn Canada into a

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

daveberta.ca - Alberta politics: J’accuse! Thomas Mulcair’s treason and the Keystone XL Pipeline.

TweetThe rhetoric is running high this week with President Barack Obama expected to soon decide the fate of the controversial TransCanada Keystone XL Pipeline. In Washington D.C. last week, federal NDP leader Thomas Mulcair criticized the pipeline that would ship bitumen from Alberta’s oilsands to refineries in Texas. Mr. Mulcair also took the opportunity to criticize [...]

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how Brad Wall’s first set of utterly implausible attacks on Cam Broten seems to reflect a failure to learn from the mistakes of the Saskatchewan Party’s Republican cousins.

For further reading (and a quick response to the spin), Broten’s policy development proposal is here.

Canadian Political Viewpoints: Coming Down the Pipeline

*This post has been amended from it’s original content, due to SK NDP Leader Cam Broten coming out in favour of Keystone; the ** denotes the area where the editing begins.Source: Star Phoenix: Broten Clarifies Stance on Pipeline

Source: Huffington Post: Brad Wall Accuses Thomas Mulcair Of ‘Betraying’ Keystone, Oilsands

Now, getting back into the swing of things with the leadership race over. I think we’re going to keep the labels, as they should make the blog a bit more easy to move through, but other than that there shouldn’t be any other major changes.

While the provincial NDP (Read more…)

Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.

- Tim Harper reminds us why Brad Wall is thoroughly off base in claiming that it’s the duty of every Canadian politician to demonstrate constant fealty to his resource-sector puppet-masters: The Conservatives, of course, would like the entire country to come together behind their view of resource extraction, but the nice thing about democracy is it accommodates dissonant voices.

Keystone faces credible and determined opposition in both countries.

There is a longstanding protocol in the U.S. that politicians do not criticize the government while abroad, but if that ever was the convention in

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: Wednesday Morning Links

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – Super Happy Mega Fun Pundit Navel-Gazing Post

I’ll have plenty more to add in later posts about the opportunities the Saskatchewan NDP holds under Cam Broten’s leadership. But before this weekend’s convention is too far in the rear-view mirror, I’ll take a few minutes to assess my own analysis of the leadership campaign.

And I’d like to think I had my share of successes.

My first-ballot best guess numbers were closer to pegging the candidates’ positioning than any other poll or source, getting within 3% of each of the candidates’ support levels. And my first-ballot analysis was on target in identifying exactly what Cam Broten needed to

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – Super Happy Mega Fun Pundit Navel-Gazing Post

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – The Dramatic Conclusion

After the first ballot results were announced yesterday, I pointed out the 20% net margin of support that Cam Broten needed to turn a close first-ballot result into a narrow win. And that turned out to be exactly what materialized: of the 2,393 votes cast initially for either Trent Wotherspoon or Erin Weir, the final result showed 18% attrition, with 51% to Broten and 31% to Ryan Meili – leading to Broten’s election as the Saskatchewan NDP’s new leader.

But in retrospect, there was another, even closer vote comparison which may have hinted at the same end result.

Notwithstanding an

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – The Dramatic Conclusion

Canadian Political Viewpoints: Convention Update: And The Leader Is…

By a very tight margin, of 44 votes, the new leader of the Saskatchewan NDP is Saskatoon-Massey Place MLA. Cam Broten.

Broten edged out first ballot leader, Ryan Meili, as mentioned by a mere 44 votes; which shows that the bulk of Trent’s supporters found their way into Cam’s camp. Cam’s speech thanked his fellow candidates, emphasizing the roles he hopes all of them will play in the next election and the hopes of seeing them all in the front bench in the next NDP caucus and government.

Cam also appealed to non-supporters, calling on the need for their vision

. . . → Read More: Canadian Political Viewpoints: Convention Update: And The Leader Is…

Canadian Political Viewpoints: Convention Update: First Ballot Results

And now for something completely different, we go from talking about the campaign to talking about the convention.

As of 1:30pm, the first ballot results are in and are posted as follows:Results: 8,719 ballots castCam Broten: 2942Ryan Meili: 3384Trent Wotherspoon: 2120

The 279 vote discrepancy is dependent on either Erin Weir votes since he still appeared on the first ballot; or by your various “spoiled” or other such errors that occur.

Erin was able to take to the stage as the first candidate to withdraw; and had one final chance to showcase his wit with a

. . . → Read More: Canadian Political Viewpoints: Convention Update: First Ballot Results

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – First Ballot Analysis

The Saskatchewan NDP leadership’s first-ballot results and ensuing developments are in. And while the balloting may be somewhat shorter than it could have been due to Trent Wotherspoon’s withdrawal, there’s still plenty of intrigue surrounding the second and final ballot.

The safest assumption may be to assume that down-ballot voting will mirror first-ballot results – in which case Ryan Meili will of course emerge ahead. And the absence of any endorsements in Cam Broten’s favour will leave him without an obvious source of additional momentum to try to sway the few voters participating today (with only about 700 additional votes

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – First Ballot Analysis

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – Convention Decision Points

With upwards of 70% of eligible voters having already cast a ballot (and plenty of question as to how many more will do so), it’s anybody’s guess as to whether new votes today will substantially influence the results of Saskatchewan’s NDP leadership race.

But for those still looking for a point of reference in deciding, I’ll offer a reminder that it’s possible to learn important lessons about a candidate by seeing how well he manages a public showcase whose planning is entirely under his campaign’s control. And so while I don’t expect to see any of the candidates radically change

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – Convention Decision Points

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Roundup

With this weekend’s convention approaching, we’re starting to see plenty more media coverage of the Saskatchewan NDP leadership race. So for those who haven’t yet voted (or those looking for some new material generally), there’s discussion on offer through:- Metro’s brief profiles of each of Cam Broten, Ryan Meili and Trent Wotherspoon;- Murray Mandryk’s latest, features each of the candidates defining their view of leadership; and- assorted other radio and TV appearances by the candidates (which I’ll post if links are available).

Meanwhile, Wotherspoon’s campaign is nicely prepared for the convention, having already circulated

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Candidate Rankings – March 5

So far, I’ve limited these rankings to the question of which candidate I see as most likely to emerge victorious at the Saskatchewan NDP’s leadership convention.

But since the rankings haven’t produced any substantial movement, I’ll include a bit more to this week’s prognostication, adding my best guess as to the candidates’ first-ballot support andestimated chance of victory.

1. Ryan Meili (1)

While I’m not entirely convinced that Meili is set to double the vote totals of his two remaining competitors, he still looks to be in the pole position heading into this weekend’s convention. And the large number of

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Candidate Rankings – March 5

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Candidate Review – Cam Broten

Apparently nearly 60% of Saskatchewan’s NDP members had already voted for a leadership candidate as of Friday, and the remaining candidates are all launching determined efforts to lock in all the support they can before Tuesday’s advance voting deadline. As a result, it’s a distinct possibility that the result of the leadership race will be all but decided early this week.

That said, there’s still plenty of room for maneuvering in how the candidates approach the convention and beyond. So I’ll take the opportunity to review how the campaign has reinforced or changed my initial perception of the leadership candidates

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Candidate Review – Cam Broten

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Roundup

With the advance voting window closing on Tuesday and the Saskatchewan NDP’s convention set to take place next weekend, we’ve seen a flurry of leadership activity in the last few days – including both late appeals from the candidates themselves, and additional material for discussion.

On the candidate front, Trent Wotherspoon’s campaign released his closing argument:

And Ryan Meili’s latest video features CCF/NDP pioneers lending their support:

Meanwhile, the latest financial report served mostly to confirm that there’s still a tight three-way race. Cam Broten took a small advantage over Meili for the most recent reporting period, while Meili still

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Roundup

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Roundup

For those of us curious as to why one of the most significant voices in Saskatchewan NDP’s leadership campaign has been fairly quiet lately, Scott Stelmaschuk offered his explanation this week – as well as an endorsement that everybody within the party should be able to support.

Meanwhile, there hasn’t been much other news to cover recently. Aside from a few more endorsements and some boilerplate appeals for support, one new policy plank has been added to the mix (Ryan Meili’s announcement on co-operative economic development).

But the campaigns’ obvious priority has been to lock in votes during the early

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Candidate Rankings – February 26

For obvious reasons, there’s at least one change to this week’s Saskatchewan NDP leadership candidate rankings. But will there be any more news other than Erin Weir’s withdrawal from the race at a time when most of the voting is expected to be taking place?

1. Ryan Meili (1)

Well, Meili for one should enjoy a strengthened position, with Weir (and by all indications his key supporters) added to what already looked to be the front-running campaign just in time to combine the candidates’ respective get-out-the-vote efforts. And while I’m not quite as eager as some to declare the

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Candidate Rankings – February 26

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – Moose Jaw Debate Notes

Let’s close out my review at the Saskatchewan NDP’s leadership debates with a brief look at the Moose Jaw forum – which featured a fair bit of talk about specific local issues (including candidate and member questions about the closure of the Valley View Centre) in addition to a familiar set of general themes:

Perhaps the most noteworthy theme throughout the debate was that of ensuring that the corporate sector shares in the province’s effort to deal with social concerns. In response to a question on climate change policy, Ryan Meili pointed out the need for large-scale businesses to pay

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr – Moose Jaw Debate Notes

Accidental Deliberations: On divisions

Dan Tan has already provided one follow-up post on the sudden rash of commentary arising out of Erin Weir’s decision to withdraw from the Saskatchewan NDP leadership race and endorse Ryan Meili. But I’ll take my own look at how the Weir endorsement and the associated reaction from the Village (or should we call it the Hamlet for Saskatchewan?) may affect the leadership campaign.

As long as there were four leadership candidates in the race, there were several ways to try to draw dividing lines among them. And the message that’s suddenly crystallized in the media wouldn’t have registered

. . . → Read More: Accidental Deliberations: On divisions

Accidental Deliberations: #skndpldr Roundup

Alongside yesterday’s news of Erin Weir’s withdrawal to support Ryan Meili in the Saskatchewan NDP leadership race (also discussed by Scott and Brian) came a few other noteworthy developments – not the least of which was the reaction of the other two leadership candidates (discussed here by Jason).

Meanwhile, Meili released a seniors policy incorporating Weir’s proposal to backfill against federal cuts to Old Age Security.

Finally, John Warnock offered up his latest thoughts – though I don’t see his overwhelming negativity about either Meili’s chances in the leadership race or the future of the NDP under Broten or

Canadian Political Viewpoints: Campaign Update: Where With Weir?

Well, by now everyone should have heard that Erin Weir has withdrawn from the Sask. NDP Leadership race and thrown his behind Ryan Meili. As mentioned yesterday, it was one of the possibilities when it was announced that the two were making a joint announcement earlier today.

As with others, I’d like to extend my well wishes to Erin and thank him for his contributions to the campaign. I think he proved beyond a shadow of a doubt that New Democrats can stand toe to toe with their right of centre counterparts on economic issues, and bring forward exciting and (Read more…)