The Impartial Premier – Trust Me
Premier Pauline Marois believes she can have her cake and eat it, too. So she is sucking and blowing at the same time about whether a vote for her Parti Quebecois is really also a vote to start the journey to yet another referendum on independence for Quebec. It seems that she believes that if she is careful with her choice of words, she can achieve two things – square the circle, blow hot and cold, turn black into white – at the same time, without anyone noticing. Premier Marois’ Open Agenda: In today’s (Read more…) . . . → Read More: CuriosityCat: Quebec: The separatist Premier who is committed and not committed
Looks like Captain Canada is staying “neutral” in the face of a PQ government which would almost certainly call a referendum and which of course, will be running on the regressive so-called “Charter of Values” that would ban observant Jews, Sikhs, Muslims, and Christians from being a part of the civil service.
If Mulcair is “neutral” against this, what will he take a stand for?
He claims to be the leader of the official opposition for Canada but Tom Mulcair says he’ll stay neutral in the Quebec provincial election. Why won’t he support the federalist side? Does he think the federal parties should steer clear on some principle? No, it’s because he’s “waiting for the day there is an NDP in Quebec.”
So, Canada be buggered, no provincial NDP, no assistance from the official opposition. Good on ya, Tommy. Now we see your true colours. Party over country, Tom. I always suspected as much.
Miscellaneous material for your mid-week reading.
- Brian and Karen Foster question why steadily improving productivity has led to increasing stratification rather than better lives for a large number of people: (W)ith all the optimism, why hasn’t technological progress actually opened up a world where we all work, and we all work less? Why do we still have some people working overtime while others sit idle, wishing for employment? Why are we not seeing the spread of work-sharing schemes, where the duties of one job are divided into two or more jobs?
We have a government program that helps companies (Read more…)
This and that for your Tuesday reading.
- The Economist looks at the relationship between equality and growth, showing that there’s at worst little evidence that fairer economies have any trouble matching their more-polarized counterparts – and best some indication that they perform better: Inequality is more closely correlated with low growth. A high Gini for net income, after redistribution, corresponds to slower growth in income per person. A rise of 5 Gini points (moving from the level in America to that in Gabon, for instance) knocks half a percentage point off average annual growth. And holding redistribution constant, a (Read more…)
Something is happening in Lethbridge. According to a group out of Lethbridge College the Liberals under Trudeau have jumped from 8.38% (2011) to 24% for the area of Lethbridge. Provincially, Raj Sherman’s Liberals have jumped from 14.7% (2012) to 18% in Lethbridge-East, a point ahead of the Wildrose and the clear alternative compared to the […]
Ontario’s budget debate may be high profile, but it misses two essential points.
With the NDP signaling NO TAX INCREASES (on the middle class) a serious discussion about taxes, particularly the need to increase corporate and wealth taxes, will not take place. It is hard to have any serious budget discussion without considering the income side. Many commentators have made this point.
At the same time, the expanding use of for-profit companies, often multinational conglomerates, to deliver and finance public services, is being ignored. The negative impact of private delivery on cost, quality, accessibility and democratic control of public services (Read more…)
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.
The NDP’s first National Day of Action last weekend looks to have received virtually no media attention despite involving numbers of participants comfortably within the range of similarly-timed conventions and conferences which routinely dominate national headlines for weeks at a time. And there’s reason for optimism that the NDP’s plan to hold several more may hint at a new stage in Canadian grassroots democracy.
But I’ll echo Murray Dobbin’s concern that while it’s well worth building a strong participatory structure, there’s reason to question the issue chosen for the first day of action: On February 22, in the aftermath of (Read more…)
Assorted content to end your week.
- Jonathan Freedland discusses how the UK’s Conservative government is forcing its poor citizens to choose between food and dignity: Cameron’s statement rests on the repeatedly implied assumption that the only people going hungry are those who have opted for idleness as a lifestyle choice, who could work but don’t fancy it. This assumption is false. The majority of poor households include at least one person who works. As Rowan Williams, the former archbishop of Canterbury, put it this week: “People who are using food banks are not scroungers who are cynically trying (Read more…)
If there’s anything to question in the latest reporting about possible post-election cooperation between the NDP and the Libs, it’s the impression that Thomas Mulcair’s willingness to pursue a coalition to replace the Harper Cons with a better government somehow comes entirely out of the blue. But while the story may not be entirely new, it’s certainly well worth pointing out: The leader of the New Democrats said on Tuesday he is willing to form a coalition in order to take power after the next election, even as the other opposition party leader, Liberal Justin Trudeau, played down the idea. … (Read more…)
The government likes to say it’s all about the middle class. So, too, the opposition parties. On Parliament Hill it seems Canada’s middle class is virtually surrounded by a sea of friends, each clamouring to outdo the other to lend a hand, give a leg up. With friends like that in high places, those of the middle class can surely look forward to a bright and prosperous future.
Except that it’s a load of crap.
An internal report prepared for the Harper government by Employment and Social Development Canada and pried out of the cold dead Tory hands (Read more…)
I watched your speech on the Unfair Elections Act. Well done. Thank you. And I didn’t know about Rose Henry’s court case. She’s really something.
I am going to make another appeal to you. As I see it and I think you see it, Harper is step by step dismantling Canada as a democratic nation. I live in fear and trembling of him getting in again.
As far as I can see, the only possible way to make sure that doesn’t happen is for the NDP and the Liberals to cooperate.
I’ve heard your reasons not (Read more…)
It seems that the leaders of all three poltical parties in the province of Ontario sense that voters want change. Premier Wynne, leading a minority Liberal government, was rejected by voters in the two byelections, but says change is wanted: Real Change Wynne?
After writing off the byelections as “skirmishes” that aren’t indicative of how things will go in a general election, Wynne vowed that the Liberals will do better whenever the campaign is held. “I know people are looking for change in this province,” she said. “Well I’m the change. My plan is the change. My team (Read more…)
This and that for your Thursday reading.
- Donovan Vincent reports on the Institute for Social Research’s study showing Canadians are highly concerned about income inequality: “People think the income gap has gotten worse. What was surprising to me was the universality of this belief. Younger people, older, higher levels of education, lower, men and women. The fact is, a wide cross-section of Canadian society believes that the income gap has gotten bigger, or much bigger in the last five years,” survey author David Northrup said in an interview.
“Usually we see a lot more variation in opinion in social (Read more…)
The Liberals, at their self-perceived best, lag many years behind the principled curve set by the NDP.
(Meanwhile, who’s taking odds as to the number of formerly-Lib Senators who will be recruited by the we’ll-take-anybody Greens?)
Is breaking the law to try and win Andrea Horwath’s idea of “leadership”?
Jim Stanford recently pointed out that many of the conservative economists who had defended the overvalued loonie have quickly shifted to applauding its depreciation.
The Government of Saskatchewan may be making a similar conversion on the road to Damascus. When federal NDP leader Tom Mulcair expressed concern about Dutch disease, premier Brad Wall denied that the high exchange rate was hurting Canadian-based exporters.
But on Friday, the Regina Leader-Post reported:
[Provincial] deputy labour minister Mike Carr said that a lower exchange rate, through its ability to stimulate sales of Canadian-produced goods, including, significantly, agricultural and mineral products of (Read more…)
Assorted content to end your week.
- Robert Reich confirms the seemingly obvious reality that poverty and inequality are in fact major obstacle facing the poor. And Paul Krugman explains why any successful progressive movement in the U.S. will need to discuss inequality and the hoarding of wealth to challenge the entrenched (and expanding) influence of those who already have the most: (J)obs and inequality are closely linked if not identical issues. There’s a pretty good although not ironclad case that soaring inequality helped set the stage for our economic crisis, and that the highly unequal distribution of (Read more…)
Yesterday, I gave a pretty harsh critique on the self contradicting core conservative talking point of cutting debt and taxes to create jobs. What I argued was that if your vision is a dramatic reduction in the size and scope of government, then be honest about it and run on that. People will approve or they won’t, but don’t dress this up as being able to magically reduce the debt, cut taxation, and increase jobs simultaneously as if there are not contradictory trade offs to each of these.
So what about the left? Is the left similarly about a (Read more…)