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Politics, Re-Spun: Occupy Canada For May Day, With Bananas

A few days ago, I wrote about picking May Day as a good time for Occupy Vancouver to reboot itself and catch up with the Occupy Movement’s worldwide #WaveOfAction.

But I think that idea can be bigger, it can be a day for all of Occupy Canada to reboot.

Here’s how:

May Day is a good focal point. A tent city at the Vancouver Art Gallery seems to be a distracting fixation. Occupy Wall Street was about people occupying the space of the 1%: Wall Street. In Vancouver, that is not the Art Gallery. It is a fantastic rallying point, (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Is Your Job Bullshit?

Work should be liberating, not enslaving!

It’s Saturday so it’s the weekend so you’re not working.

But that’s just an incorrect hypothesis. Lots of people are working this weekend. In fact, weekends don’t mean much to billions of people. They are a luxury, relatively speaking.

But your job may be bullshit, in the context of how our society could/should be operating. We should have way more leisure time if we managed human economic activity more intelligently.

Instead, “we” [well, the 1%] are busy maximizing shareholder wealth instead. This is why we don’t have a sustainable 15 or 20 hour work (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: Canada’s Seeks the OECD Record for Income Inequality

America: Where the rich get richer faster than in so many other places!

Yesterday I wrote about the rebooting of the Occupy Movement in 10 days. I’m very excited.

And to help you understand why this is such a big deal, especially in Canada, it’s important to see how Canada is increasingly becoming the poster child for income inequality. We are not nice and neighbourly and friendly. We are increasingly unequal society. Unless we step up and say that we’re mad as hell and we aren’t going to take it any more, the rich in Canada will continue to pad (Read more…)

Autonomy For All: Canada Moving Toward US Style Partisan Administered Elections

I am by no means well read on the nitty gritty of Canadian federal elections, but this strikes me as an incredibly bad idea: [Former B.C. Chief Electoral Officer Harry Neufeld] says Section 44 of the government’s new legislation would allow all central polling supervisors to be appointed by a riding’s incumbent candidate or the candidate’s party.“It’s completely inappropriate in a democracy, ” said Neufeld.

Under current legislation, central poll supervisors are appointed by returning officers, who are hired by Elections Canada. The supervisors are put in place at polling stations to make sure voting unfolds smoothly.

(Read more…)

Alberta Diary: NDP-Grit coalition to defeat Rob Anders? Unlikely! This is a Tory civil war

Alberta Premier Alison Redford, left, glares at Rob Anders, far right (as it were), Canada’s Worst MP, as challenger Ron Liepert, centre, with an unidentified vole who is not authorized to speak on the record, look on. Actual Alberta politicians may not appear exactly as illustrated, but pretty much. Below: The real Rob Anders, asleep on the job.

It’s hard to fault Rob Anders for framing his intramural opponents in the new Calgary Signal Hill riding as a conspiracy of Liberals, New Democrats and Red Tories.

After all, it’s a well-established fact that nothing frightens Calgary voters quite as (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Why I voted for Jim Coutts in 1984 and probably would again, a lesson in retail politics

Jim Coutts, son of the Great Plains and, as long-time principal secretary to Liberal prime minister Pierre Trudeau, once said to be the second most powerful person in Canada. (University of Lethbridge photo.) Below: The Lancaster bomber arrives in Nanton, inconveniently huge, but still too small to house a roadside café; my uncle, Fred Garratt, who ran Nanton’s hardware store.

I only met Jim Coutts once, almost 30 years ago, and only for about 30 minutes, but he left an impression that has proven indelible and taught me a couple of worthwhile lessons about retail politics in the process.

(Read more…)

calgaryliberal.com: The brutal lessons of 2013.

2013 has been a rather tough year for this blogger. I ran for the Vice Presidency of the Alberta Liberal Party and was unsuccessful. Quite quickly I found I had little support in Edmonton and that I had to work harder to earn the trust of people. It was truly a humbling experience. When the Alberta […]

The Canadian Progressive: Justin Trudeau “ladies night” event “condescending and patronizing”

Canadian women, including politicians, are dismissing Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau’s “ladies night” event in Toronto as “condescending and patronizing”.

The post Justin Trudeau “ladies night” event “condescending and patronizing” appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

Alberta Diary: Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Halloween 2013: a meditation on power

Prime Minister Stephen Harper just one year ago. Actual Canadian prime ministers may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Senator Mike Duffy and former Harper cabinet member Jim Prentice.

Last Halloween, when Prime Minister Stephen Harper went trick ’n’ treating, he was monarch of all he surveyed.

This year, he’s a ghost.

Oh, Mr. Harper is still corporeal enough. He passed through security Wednesday on his way to Calgary, I suppose, although one imagines prime ministers don’t have to take off their shoes and shuffle along in their stockings, or answer to why they failed to stow their toothpaste is (Read more…)

Alberta Diary: Coming soon, perhaps, a legitimate reason for Canadians to thank Conrad Black!

Linda McQuaig addresses the Alberta Union of Provincial Employees annual convention in 2008. (AUPE photo taken by Daryl Dyck.) Below: Conrad Black in the uniform of the Governor General’s Foot Guard, and not, as you may have thought, that of a security guard.

It occurs to me that we Canadians may soon actually have something for which we can be grateful to Conrad Black!

I know that for most readers of this blog this will come as an astonishing thought. Indeed, it would be fair to describe this as a unique development in the long and rocky relationship between (Read more…)

BigCityLib Strikes Back: The State Of The LPC

Last evening Jeff Jedras was good enough to organize a call between LPC poohbahs, ably represented in this case by MP Dominic Leblanc, and a number of Lib friendly bloggers.  The idea was to discuss the state of the game on the eve of today’s throne speech.  This is my take on that call.

First, as to the measures that have been leaked to the media (cable channels  à la carte, closing the price gap between U.S. and Canadian retail goods): these show that the Harper government has been picking up the same signals from Canadians over the (Read more…)

Susan on the Soapbox: Dinner with Justin Trudeau: Gimmick or Doing Politics Differently?

“Have dinner with me, Susan.” What a charming invitation. Too bad it’s part of a fundraising campaign directed at 300,000 supporters of the federal Liberal party.

But wait…let’s think about this for a moment. For a $5.00 donation, Ms Soapbox and four of her closest friends and relatives get a one in 6,000* shot at tackling Justin Trudeau on the issues near and dear to their hearts. Cool!

The contest

Justin Trudeau

Make no mistake, “Dinner with Justin” is a real contest with Justin as the prize. Typical lottery rules apply including the dreaded (Read more…)

Scott's DiaTribes: Nice catch, JT

A surprise announcement yesterday from Justin Trudeau and the LPC, with a new military adviser on the LPC team, and possibly one that will run for election in 2015:

Retired general Andrew Leslie, former commander of Canadian army..has agreed to co-chair an advisory council on international affairs for the Liberal leader and is not ruling out running for the party in the 2015 election…Leslie said his decision to join the Liberals came abruptly a few weeks ago, when news first leaked out about the Quebec government’s proposed charter of values, which would ban public servants from wearing any conspicuous (Read more…)

The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Mulcair’s Beard Is Not The Point

There are days that I am positive that the “image consultants” who hover around our political leaders don’t have a clue what they are talking about.  Today, we find the discussion of the week is whether or not Mulcair should shave off his beard.

But media consultant Barry McLoughlin told HuffPost that if Mulcair was his client, he’d recommend he take two weeks off in the summer and shave it. McLouglin said that although Mulcair’s beard is well-styled, trimmed and looks good on him, it creates a barrier between him and the voter. Hiding some of his face makes it (Read more…) . . . → Read More: The Cracked Crystal Ball II: Mulcair’s Beard Is Not The Point

Politics, Re-Spun: MexAmeriCanada? We Are Not Thinking Creatively Enough

MexAmeriCanada doesn’t have to be our future.

I think I’m guilty of being a bit slow and uncreative. The bogeyman of deep integration, North American Union, the United States-ification of Canada, the United States OF Canada, and Canada becoming states #51-60 plus three more protectorates is just too simplistic.

We just have an inherent Canadian urge to be colonized. Maybe because it’s all we really know.

It’s not about someone stealing our sovereignty, or losing our sovereignty, we just seem to feel more comfortable as a nation, being someone’s colony. Like we can’t grow up and make our own decisions, (Read more…)

Politics, Re-Spun: MexAmeriCanada, Version 2013

Welcome to the United States of MexAmeriCanada. Represent!

I was just thinking a few days ago how I haven’t used the MexAmeriCanada tag for a while. Did I cause this to happen, in some cosmic kind of way?

In the old days it was Canadian Liberal Prime Minister Paul Martin negotiating the post-911 deep integration of Fortress North America with President George W. Bush.

Now we have “opposite” governing bodies in the two nations, though they’re barely different. North America is still strolling towards a 1984/Brave New World/V For Vendetta kind of soft fascist near-future of corporate “human” rights inside (Read more…)

calgaryliberal.com: Admitting My Failure

At the Alberta Liberal Party’s annual general meeting in June more than two thirds voted to shut down the supporter system. As someone who championed the system when it was first introduced, and then pushed for it nationally for the federal Liberals, I must admit my failure to both Albertans and to the provincial party. And [...]

Scott's DiaTribes: Welcoming in a new LPC Communications Director

Via Twitter comes this tweet from Mylene Dupere:

“Very enthusiastic to join @JustinTrudeau’s team as Director of Communications next Monday”

Who is Mylene Dupere? Her Twitter account only mentions she is a “public relations specialist”. Her LinkedIn page says she is (was) the Manager, Media Services at PWGSC (Public Works and Government Services). Previous to that, she has experience in a couple of other government departments (HRSDC, Heritage) , so she has experience in working in the public service/public administration field.

Other then that, I don’t know a lot about her (nothing, actually). Perhaps my Liberal colleagues “in the know” (Read more…)

Autonomy For All: Not Impressed with NDP Climate Motion Ploy

Today the NDP’s environment critic used an opposition day to have the House of Commons vote on this motion: “That this House: (a) agree with many Canadians and the International Energy Agency that there is grave concern with the impacts of a 2 degree rise in global average temperatures; (b) condemn the lack of effective action by successive federal governments since 1998 to address emissions and meet our Kyoto commitments; and (c) call on the government to immediately table its federal climate change adaptation plan.”

Unsurprisingly, the Conservatives, Liberals and sole Green Party MP Elizabeth May all voted (Read more…)

The Canadian Progressive: Harper Says New Anti-Trudeau Flier Is Part Of “Democratic Debate”

By: Obert Madondo | The Canadian Progressive: Stephen Harper wants us all to believe that the Conservatives’ new anti-Trudeau household flier is part of “democratic debate.” The Harper Conservatives greeted Justin Trudeau‘s election as Liberal leader with a below-the-belt TV ad rejected by Canadians. This week, the Conservatives launched a tax-payer-funded flyer campaign attacking [...]

The post Harper Says New Anti-Trudeau Flier Is Part Of “Democratic Debate” appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: Justin Trudeau: “I’m Here To Serve” (VIDEO)

Canada, meet Justin Trudeau, the new leader of the Liberal Party of Canada! We recommend:A great betrayal: Trudeau and the Liberals voted for Harper’s sell-out FIPAAt Last, Marc Garneau Challenges Justin Trudeau To Talk Policy Harper Conservatives attack Trudeau on his first day as Liberal leader (VIDEO)Justin Trudeau to defend [...]

The post Justin Trudeau: “I’m Here To Serve” (VIDEO) appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

The Canadian Progressive: Liberal roundtable on sexual harassment within the RCMP (VIDEO)

A Liberal roundtable on sexual harassment within the RCMP, hosted by the party’s Women’s Caucus. The Canadian Progressive recommends: High profile ex-Mountie joins hundreds of Canadian women in RCMP lawsuit RCMP’s Misogynistic Response to Galliford Sexual Harassment Claim We recommend:High profile ex-Mountie joins hundreds of Canadian women in RCMP lawsuitHundreds [...]

The post Liberal roundtable on sexual harassment within the RCMP (VIDEO) appeared first on The Canadian Progressive.

calgaryliberal.com: Vincent Endorses Graeme Maitland’s Run for AYL President

Vincent St. Pierre, Canada’s #1 Political Blogger and Alberta Young Liberal, has endorsed Graeme Maitland in his run for President of the Alberta Young Liberals. See Vincent’s endorsement below. “My name is Vincent St. Pierre. And I am proud to endorse Graeme Maitland for AYL president. His work as a young liberal in Calgary-Klein, efforts [...]

Scott's DiaTribes: Positive vs Negative (Ads)

As soon as Justin Trudeau won, the Conservative attack ads came out. Everyone knew they’d be coming, but they came out far earlier then they did after Dion and Ignatieff became Liberal leaders, hinting and indicating that the Conservatives are very concerned about Justin Trudeau, even 2 years out from the next election.

Debate has raged of course, whether JT’s declaration that he was going to stay positive would work or not. Some believe it to be needlessly unilaterally disarming themselves, others feel that Trudeau is already a known quantity and that this alone should allow him to resist the (Read more…) battering.

What we didn’t know however was whether the [...]