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Writings of J. Todd Ring: Prospects for America: Sanders vs Civil War

(And that is not a threat, of course, but a prediction) An analysis of the present state of future prospects of the nation ~ An open letter in response to Daily Kos, and to anyone concerned with either justice, or peace The article I recently wrote and… . . . → Read More: Writings of J. Todd Ring: Prospects for America: Sanders vs Civil War

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: Single Member-Proportional Vote (SM-PV) Feedback & Public Support

Back in May I came up with an idea for electoral reform. Since then I’ve been seeking input, looking for similarelectoral systems, and trying to judge what the public would think of SM-PV. In all three areas I have had a bit of success.For those who didn’t check out the link above my proposed system keeps most of the FPTP system intact with one keychange: every MP in the House of Commons would have a vote that is stronger or weaker based on their party’s share of the popular vote. The result bei […] . . . → Read More: The Tory Pirate – Politics & Policy: Single Member-Proportional Vote (SM-PV) Feedback & Public Support

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Canadian and US Federal Elections – 2015, 2016: A summary of the prospects and possible outcomes

Revolution, reform, stagnation – or worse? It is sometimes difficult to say what would be best for a given nation at a given time in history. There are things that would be desirable, of course, or which seem desirable, and things that are quite clearly, urgently needed – but in what way they should best . . . → Read More: Writings of J. Todd Ring: Canadian and US Federal Elections – 2015, 2016: A summary of the prospects and possible outcomes

Writings of J. Todd Ring: Canadian and US Federal Elections – 2015, 2016: A summary of the prospects and possible outcomes

Revolution, reform, stagnation – or worse? It is sometimes difficult to say what would be best for a given nation at a given time in history. There are things that would be desirable, of course, or which seem desirable, and things that are quite clearly, urgently needed – but in what way they should best . . . → Read More: Writings of J. Todd Ring: Canadian and US Federal Elections – 2015, 2016: A summary of the prospects and possible outcomes

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: Education Reform In New Brunswick: What Japan Can Teach Us (Part 1)

As a graduate of New Brunswick’s education system I sometimes reflect onthe quality of the schooling I received. I also have a longstanding  interest inJapanese culture. It is natural then that I would eventually get to looking at howJapan does education. What I found was a school system that better instills thevalues of leadership, sense of community, and respect than . . . → Read More: The Tory Pirate – Politics & Policy: Education Reform In New Brunswick: What Japan Can Teach Us (Part 1)

atypicalalbertan.ca: Harper is not serious about senate reform

Stephen Harper is not serious about senate reform.

Despite his announcement last week that he plans to stop filling vacancies in the upper chamber until the senate is reformed, his track record on the issue is very poor.

Stephen Harper, cc: pmwebphotos (Flickr.com)

Harper was first elected to parliament in 1993 as the Calgary West . . . → Read More: atypicalalbertan.ca: Harper is not serious about senate reform

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: The Case for a Province of First Nations

UPDATE: It appears I am not the first to consider this idea. A paper was published by Queens University which goes intomuch more detail than I ever could. Link

The problems facing Canada’s First Nations are many and longstanding. Some of these problems are structural. Bandleadership often has to deal with all the considerations of . . . → Read More: The Tory Pirate – Politics & Policy: The Case for a Province of First Nations

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: A Look at ‘100 Remedies for a Broken Democracy’

I received a link to this site from The Friends of the Reform Act. It is essentially a site to crowd source the top 100 ideas forimproving Canadian democracy (there is a separate effort for the USA). So far they are halfway to 100 ideas. Notsurprisingly electoral & Senate reform dominate the proposals but a . . . → Read More: The Tory Pirate – Politics & Policy: A Look at ‘100 Remedies for a Broken Democracy’

The Tory Pirate - Politics & Policy: Electoral Reform: Bennett Method 2.0

Note: An earlier version of this article had a calculation error in regards to the Bloc Quebecois. I have corrected it and added additional information in italics regarding calculating voting power.

I have been posting about electoral reform for a while now. Mostly this has been concerning a new system I devised which I named . . . → Read More: The Tory Pirate – Politics & Policy: Electoral Reform: Bennett Method 2.0

The Disaffected Lib: Are Canada’s Disaffected the Raw Material for a Leftist Renaissance?

Europe is still reeling from the victory of the Syriza party in the recent Greek elections.  It was a matter of days before that spread to austerity-wracked Spain’s Podemos movement that has gone from nothing to the country’s second largest political party in just six months.

Now The Tyee’s Crawford Killian asks whether Canada’s politically disaffected . . . → Read More: The Disaffected Lib: Are Canada’s Disaffected the Raw Material for a Leftist Renaissance?

LeDaro: Harper’s ‘Fair’ Elections Act

 Has Harper gone crazy? Does he care about democracy? He seems more and more a dictator. Harper’s Conservatives even shortened debate in the House of Commons over this bill.

The Chief Electoral Officer was not involved in the drafting process, he only saw it after the media did. Usually, for a bill of this . . . → Read More: LeDaro: Harper’s ‘Fair’ Elections Act

The Disaffected Lib: Is This How the Senate Whitewash Begins?

Duffy, Wallin and Brazeau turfed out in disgrace by a gaggle of Tory senators who had expense skeletons in their own closets to conceal.  Word from Ottawa is that there are plenty of other senators in the same boat on housing expenses, perhaps two to three dozen, who all voted as they were directed . . . → Read More: The Disaffected Lib: Is This How the Senate Whitewash Begins?

LeDaro: Justin Trudeau’s Senate Move… a great political move or amateurish

Harper has been mired in embarrassing scandals concerning his Senators, from Wallin to Duffy to Brazeau. Justin Trudeau has responded with a move that some have called “bold” and “game-changing” by kicking all Liberal Senators out of caucus. I don’t think it’s “bold” or “game-changing” and it does not show Trudeau to be a . . . → Read More: LeDaro: Justin Trudeau’s Senate Move… a great political move or amateurish

Scott's DiaTribes: Senate reform still desired over Senate abolition or status quo

Despite the Senate scandal deepening, it appears that for now, Canadians still prefer reforming the Senate over abolishing it, as indicated by this Ipsos-Reid poll from a couple of days ago. 49% of respondents indicated reform (and the Ipsos question on reform is worded as “..reformed to make it for example an elected body“) while . . . → Read More: Scott’s DiaTribes: Senate reform still desired over Senate abolition or status quo

ParliamANT Hill: WallAnt audit has opposition demanding PM response

Inspired by these headlines: http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/story/2013/08/14/pol-wallin-senate-audit-ndp-dewar-turmel.html

http://www.huffingtonpost.ca/2013/08/13/stephen-harper-pamela-wallin-video_n_3749071.html?utm_hp_ref=fb&src=sp&comm_ref=false

The Canadian Progressive: Saskatchewan: A beachhead of labour law reform?

By: Andrew Stevens | First published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives on May 3, 2013: Sweeping changes to Saskatchewan’s labour relations and employment standards legislation are on the verge of being passed. Bill 85, the Saskatchewan Employment Act, will dramatically transform the laws governing trade unions and industrial relations in the province. The . . . → Read More: The Canadian Progressive: Saskatchewan: A beachhead of labour law reform?

The Canadian Progressive: Saskatchewan: A beachhead of labour law reform?

By: Andrew Stevens | First published by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives on May 3, 2013: Sweeping changes to Saskatchewan’s labour relations and employment standards legislation are on the verge of being passed. Bill 85, the Saskatchewan Employment Act, will dramatically transform the laws governing trade unions and industrial relations in the province. The . . . → Read More: The Canadian Progressive: Saskatchewan: A beachhead of labour law reform?

The Scott Ross: The Undemocratic Elected Senate & The Democratic Appointed One

90% of Americans support universal background checks for guns yet on Wednesday the American Senate struck down that legislation. That’s not very democratic, is it?

Those in Canada who fervently cling to the idea that voting will make our Senate democratic almost completely ignore the problems that come with it, such as the lobbyists and . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: The Undemocratic Elected Senate & The Democratic Appointed One

The Canadian Progressive: NDP: Abolish the “unelected and unaccountable Senate of Canada”

By: Obert Madondo | The Canadian Progressive, Mar 4, 2013: The New Democrats today repeated their call for the abolition of Canada’s scandal-ridden “useless, expensive, undemocratic appendage of government”, the Senate. The Official Opposition’s MP for Toronto-Danforth, Craig Scott, issued the following statement earlier today: In order to address the irresponsible conduct of the unelected . . . → Read More: The Canadian Progressive: NDP: Abolish the “unelected and unaccountable Senate of Canada”

The Scott Ross: Why Canada Needs An Elected Senate Just Like America’s

“Washington is broken.” – Barack Obama

Looking at the Canadian Senate in isolation might motivate many to question it, but compared to the American Senate, Canadians should be proud of their upper chamber.

Besides the fact that googling “Ottawa is broken” brings zero related results, the American Senate is so dysfunctional quite a . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: Why Canada Needs An Elected Senate Just Like America’s

The Scott Ross: America’s Broken Senate

There might not be a more persuasive argument against an elected senate than the American example. From filibustering to partisan deadlock to disproportionate representation, this broken institution south of our border is largely responsible for the lo… . . . → Read More: The Scott Ross: America’s Broken Senate

Law is Cool: LSUC Publishes Articling Task Force Report

This article was originally published on www.LFTI.ca

The Law Society of Upper Canada (LSUC)’s articling task force has released its final report on its proposed solution for what has been dubbed the “Articling Crisis” facing recent law grads in Ontario. The report directly concerns current law students, new graduates of law programs, law firms, and . . . → Read More: Law is Cool: LSUC Publishes Articling Task Force Report

An individual with opinions.: It’s conclusive, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is definitively leaning towards the Conservatives.

The [Manning] centre would not be another political party, but help build an “infrastructure” for existing Conservative parties federally and provincially, Mr. Manning said. (source)

As other progressive bloggers have pointed out, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is obviously partisan – slanted towards the Conservatives. You really just had to look at their . . . → Read More: An individual with opinions.: It’s conclusive, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is definitively leaning towards the Conservatives.

An individual with opinions.: It’s conclusive, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is definitively leaning towards the Conservatives.

The [Manning] centre would not be another political party, but help build an “infrastructure” for existing Conservative parties federally and provincially, Mr. Manning said. (source)


As other progressive bloggers have pointed out, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is obviously partisan – slanted towards the Conservatives. You really just had to look at their board of directors,

1. Preston Manning – Reform party founder and leader for many years. Long time associates with Harper for obvious reasons.
2. Cliff Fryerscurrently the far-right party Wildrose party chairman. He was also party and campaign chairman for the Reform Party in the early 1990s.
3. Blair Nixon – no explicit connections, but tax advisor to a few natural resource companies.
4. Rick Anderson – national director of the Reform party in the early 1990s.
5. Thompson MacDonald – no explicit connections, but board member of an American mining company.
6. Gwyn Morganties to various big corporations, including oil company Encana.
7. Tasha Kheiriddin – self-described conservative, also the President of the Progressive Conservative Youth Federation during the time of far-right Mike Hudak.
8. Tom Long – involved and worked for the Brian Mulroney PCs, then campaign manager to various PC candidates federally and provincially, then President of the Ontario PCs from 1986 to 1989, helped get Mike Harris elected, and was a founding member of the Canadian Alliance – and this is just according to the bio on the Manning Centre!
9. Dan Nowlan – Vice president of banking investment group, and according to an Elections Ontario file, in 2009 was the chief financial officer for the Progressive Conservatives’ Tim Hudak.
10. Chuck Strahl – former Conservative MP, active in the early reform days.

This is every member on the board. Which makes 8 out of 10 (80%) having explicit connections to right-wing political parties (Conservative, and its father, Reform Party), and 10 out of 10 (100%) having either a connection to a political party or business. This is why it’s so obvious this organization is a front for right-wing and business interests.

***

Regardless, I compiled some more data just to make this pronouncement even more conclusive. I looked at their 2012 youtube channel, which is the msot updated, and compiled some data. There’s (as of September 21st, 2012) 12 videos – 10 of which are speeches or conferences. One of those speeches is just from Preston Manning, so I have excluded it as well. In total, we’re looking at 10 videos, and the political affiliations of those speaking and participating.

So, made a list of all the speakers in each speech, and tracked their political affiliations. Keep in mind, for this, I excluded anyone who was already a board member from this list. I also won’t be tracking business connections, as I think that’s unnecessary considering the findings. I will be tracking influential unions members, just because there’s only one, so it doesn’t really detract from the end result.

Here are my findings:

  • Six current Conservative Member of Parliament 
  • Including four current Conservative Cabinet Ministers
  • Three former Conservative MPs 
  • One former Reform Party MP (Remember, not including board members)
  • Three others with direct connections to the Conservatives (Campaign Manager, donor, chief of staff)
  • One Republican
  • One British Tory
  • One Union Leader
  • Zero current or former opposition members
  • One guy with some past connection to the Parti Quebecois



See for yourself, here is the list of links and subsequent speakers and participants:

–>
–>

Chair: Jay Hill, Former Whip (Former Conservative MP and whip)
Speaker: HON. JOE OLIVER, MINISTER (Conservative Minister)
– Dawn Farrell, Executive
– Nancy Olewiler, Economist
– Robert Blakely, Union Leader (Union)

 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wfJXb1WQbc&feature=plcp– March 16th
Chair: Dave Quist, IMFC
Speaker: MARVIN OLASKY, WRITER
– Michael Coren, TV Host

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9p6xHAIZL4M&feature=plcp– March 16th
Chair: Nicolas Offord, Executive
Speaker: HON. DIANE FINLEY, MINISTER (Conservative Minister)
– Kate Bahen, Charity Expert
– Ray Pennings, Cardus

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBKeck2fZAI&feature=plcp– March 15th
Chair: Youri Chassin, Economist
– Eric Duhaime, Commentator
– Mathieu Bock-Côté, Sociologist (activity with PQ?)
– Tasha Kheiriddin, TV Host (National Post)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3aWJEiCkN8&feature=plcp– march 14th
Hostess and Coordinator: Leah Costello, Writer
Contestants:
-Pierre-Olivier Bastien-Dionne
-Vass Bednar
-Craig Dellandrea (Conservative donor and supporter)
Judges:
– Cliff Fryers, Executive (Reform/UA activist)
– Deb Grey, Former MP (First Reform MP)
– Steve Madely, Radio Host

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zE8luHStHc&feature=plcp– March 14th
Chair: Preston Manning, Manning Centre
Speaker: HON. PETER MACKAY, MINISTER (Conservative Minister)
-Barry Cooper, Professor – Duff Crerar, Military Historian

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ckDSQzsslgc&feature=plcp– March 14th
Chair: Dan Nowlan, Executive
Speaker: HON. TONY CLEMENT, MINISTER
 Bill Robson, CD HOWE (Right-wing think-tank)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGlnbCI7mvs&feature=plcp– March 14th
Chair: Nick Gafuik, Commentator
– Monte Solberg, Commentator (Conservative MP till 2008)
– Robert Sopuck, MP (Conservative MP)
– Bob Mills, Former MP (Conservative MP till 2008)
– Michelle Rempel, MP (Conservative MP)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEtKYAf-y3M&feature=plcp– March 13th
Tom Flanagan, Professor (Long time buddies with Harper, current working for the Wild Rose Party)
Travis Smith, Professor
Ian Brodie, Strategist (former chief of staff for Harper)
Andrew Coyne, Commentator (National Post)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8OYWCTtqzA&feature=plcp– March 13th

Daniel Hannan (British Tory)
David Wilkins (Republican)

 

. . . → Read More: An individual with opinions.: It’s conclusive, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is definitively leaning towards the Conservatives.

CANADIAN PROGRESSIVE WORLD: Immigration Bill C31: Auschwitz Survivor Wiesel Confronts Harper

“I feel morally compelled to remain on the side of other uprooted men and women everywhere. Today, as yesterday, a nation is judged by its attitude towards refugees.”

The sobering words of Jewish-American political activist, Nobel laureate, writer, professor, Elie Wiesel. The Holocaust survivor’s response to the Harper Conservative governments’ draconian changes to Canada’s refugee . . . → Read More: CANADIAN PROGRESSIVE WORLD: Immigration Bill C31: Auschwitz Survivor Wiesel Confronts Harper