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Author Topic: Canada General Discussion  (Read 223635 times)
Foucaulf
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« on: January 06, 2012, 08:25:55 pm »

Lots of questions for the new year. How will the relationship between McGuinty and Harper play out? Which year will Flaherty now predict that he'll balance the budget? Will Redford actually solve Alberta's fiscal maelstrom? Will the Conservatives formulate a coherent foreign policy?

For now, here's an article on Canada's stubborn unemployment rate and the attrition of consumer confidence. Perhaps Flaherty's blame-pinning on Europe has backfired?
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #1 on: June 16, 2012, 04:19:37 pm »

Only the Ipsos poll is publicly available, and that's even more terrifying for the Liberals. the NDP leads in every single demographic - the closest the Liberals get is being eight points behind in the "75k+" group.

The only question now is if the Liberals survive the election. They should, since the Conservatives are now stagnating. Cummins has no charisma and not even a riding on which he can ride into the legislature. Kevin Falcon will probably win the leadership election after the Liberals lose in 2013, after which he'll target Conservative voters by offering to scrap the carbon tax and the like.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #2 on: June 16, 2012, 05:00:59 pm »

Thank you so much for the Forum poll! This is also a "BC issues" poll, which makes for lovely reading.

Not much to say about the national poll, except that seeing the NDP so far ahead is making me a bit light-headed. Also, Trudeau has to at least run in order to keep the Liberals alive. The Liberal "revival strategy" is all pinned on getting the citizenry more interested in the campaign, and Trudeau is the only one recognized by that citizenry. Maybe other Liberals should start picking fights with Conservative senators to raise their profile...
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #3 on: July 03, 2012, 06:35:13 pm »

Says quite a bit about Canadian politics that the scandal which broke Oda's back was her ordering a $16 glass of orange juice.

Fantino and Toews are probably the most likely to be kicked out, followed by MacKay and Paradis (only one of the four I think will stay). The thing with Chris Alexander is his perfect resume as Canada's ambassador to Afghanistan, coupled with general inoffensiveness. I keep thinking Clement will be moved around somewhere despite all insider talk to the contrary.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #4 on: August 07, 2012, 06:53:55 pm »


It was pretty transparent that Clark's spat with Alberta over whether BC should earn revenues from the Enbridge pipeline was an attempt to gain political points, trying to balance business interests and the electorate. If she want to get elected, she ought to axe the pipeline and go from there.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #5 on: August 08, 2012, 03:29:30 pm »
« Edited: August 08, 2012, 04:01:40 pm by Foucaulf »

One problem I have with that site's analysis is this sentence:

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Which is very dishonest on his part, considering BC politics for 60 years consisted of right-wing coalitions/mass parties against a solid bloc of CCF/NDP voters. The massive swing of 2001 was due to a NDP government corrupted by bad business deals - and the case ought to be the same in 2013.

Does Cummins have a chance of making it into parliament at all?

I don't think so for two reasons:

-Does he have a base? Before party leader he was a Conservative MP out of Harper's inner circle, representing Richmond East (anti-HST and pro-NDP as a consequence) and Delta (where  former councilor Vicki Huntington looks safe). He has very low name recognition because of a media used to a two-party system. There are two areas where his message could sell: in the Interior and in Vancouver's majority-white eastern suburbs. He has not lived in either.

-His platform is bare-bones, typical for a protest party. I'm not saying Conservative voters will switch back to the Liberals, but their base is groups of angry seniors, minorities in every riding. It's more likely star candidates hijack the Conservative name than the other way around.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #6 on: August 09, 2012, 12:27:47 am »

A question. I remember than she is that Independant elected in a Liberal riding.
Does she leans on a side?

She isn't a very vocal critic of the government, and her rationale for being an independent in the first place is so she can pursue pet issues. Like I said before, not being in either main party really sucks the airtime out of you.  From what I can tell she has gotten herself involved in opposing the HST and is stridently against environmental exploitation. She is far too economically liberal to be in the NDP; more like Clark in that aspect.

Her victory is probably a response to the Liberal candidate, Wally Oppal, being parachuted into Delta. His riding was vacated to make way for police chief Kash Heed, a star candidate with Punjabi appeal - who ended up being shamed by campaign finance problems anyway.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #7 on: October 07, 2012, 08:01:15 pm »

A few stories from BC I'm following:

- An article from Vancouver's Georgia Straight from a week ago accused John Furlong, the Vancouver Olympics CEO, of abusing native students on his first visit to Canada. Furlong responds with a lawsuit while other publications scramble to fill in the story.

- Unrest over John Cummins's leadership in the BC Conservatives boils over. Cummins orders all party dissenters to resign their membership, while oddly giving any takers a full refuns.  It's not a substantial story, but it's a chance to poke fun at the Conservatives; at this rate they don't look like the people who can build the coalition which takes down the NDP.

-Elaborating on that BC Lieutenant-Governor announcement: Guichon is a highly-ranked lobbyist for the ranchers and donated to the Liberal party.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2012, 05:46:17 pm »


This is probably the most ridiculous piece of political news all year. Message control is the biggest thing the Liberals can learn from the Conservatives, yet there's always a dozen Liberal politicos lining up to speak. I suppose the forces behind the curtain thinks repeating the Ignatieff experiment, but without the worldliness, is worth a shot; or maybe they should have let Ignatieff act his intelligence instead of proposing five focus-group tested tax cuts through the whole campaign!


I haven't paid attention to Poilievre since earlier this month, but he fits the definition of a pest perfectly. The thing is that none of the home team's fans support the pest either unless he makes a hit or scores.

It may be strategic for the Conservatives to brandish the weapon, but who knows what the effects of the legislation will be if it passes? The law concerns Ontario, and the constant labour shortages in Alberta shows that structural economic situations cannot be fixed easily.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2012, 07:03:45 pm »

RTW: Hudak's also planning that if he wins a majority. US experience shows the PEUs usually take a huge blow, but our rate of unionization is triple theirs so we'll wait and see. As for Poilievre (who I met a few months ago), even though he overdoes the attack-dog thing on occasion I have hopes he'll see bigger things down the line.

Sorry, I was a bit glib there:

I think were such legislation passed Canadian unions will be crippled by it. Education's the big one, followed by public employers' unions (e.g. Air Canada, bureaucrats), though maybe the steelworkers and the CAW will be more resilient.

The question is whether such legislation can boost economic growth at all. I don't think so if Ontario is going through a structural thing where the manufacturing employees have to go somewhere else. If legislation is passed, then by 2015 the deficit will still be there and the Conservatives' economic credibility will continue to erode. But a lot of this is empty talk because the federal government are responsible for labour law in very few professions; god help us if Hudak's PCs survive longer than one mandate.

Poilievre, at least, is a better thinker than Del Mastro. Harper's economic ministers (Flaherty, Paradis, Raitt, Ambrose) are settled in; maybe he could replace Oliver one day.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2013, 08:39:33 am »

I'm not convinced the Trudeau China comments are that damaging. It hasn't spread through the Chinese language press yet, and the ones who take offense are "political expatriates," so to speak. The greater portion of Chinese immigrants are middle-income, white collar people, who are enravelled by consumption tax cuts and the like. It's an absurd comment, but he is targeting the youth demographic more anyway.

That leads into a remark on the conservatism of immigrants. Older ones, well sheltered in Canadian suburbs, are more protected these days from value shifts than if they stayed in their rapidly developing home countries. But my experience shows youth, even first generation ones, integrate very quickly. They have their own quirks, but they have a progressive and liberal worldview and Trudeau is playing into that.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #11 on: December 18, 2013, 07:00:09 pm »

The problem is that I've been away from Vancouver for at least a year and I never had any party connections. My prediction has no authority, but here goes:

On balance he'll go for it. While diving through politics sites I found an interview in which he was "frustrated" about the last loss. And he has particular reason for doing so; he represents New Westminster, white but with significant Asian inflows, and he tries to engage with these immigration groups. To see the BCNDP get destroyed due to lack of connections within Asian communities, though only one factor, is troubling because it can be changed...

And yet I don't think he will. Either he's in or David Eby (who beat Clark in her riding last election), and Julian has enough of a career to not to waste time navigating the party elites backdoors. He already refused to run for federal leader in 2012 out of deference for Topp, in my opinion.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #12 on: December 19, 2013, 06:05:29 pm »
« Edited: December 19, 2013, 06:15:19 pm by Foucaulf »

Did I really call Julian's refusal? Good lord.

Of course pundits will spin this into a general "no one wants to be NDP leader!" narrative, but it's more subtle than it looks. The executive until the 2013 election was still ran by brass from the Clark days (Sihota, Dix) and for good reason. But it has been fifteen years, and people like the federal MPs are nowhere near that group. Julian was a community activist; Donnelly environmental. They're closer to Green MLA Andrew Weaver than anything.

In wake of the election, the 90s generation have a candidate; Mike Farnworth, who ran last election on a credibility platform. You're going to hear party members say he'll be coronated, but who knows? That the BCNDP has not been able to articulate a winning coalition means no one knows what the ideal candidate should be.


EDIT: Kennedy Stewart (MP Burnaby-Douglas) is still thinking. But this is more out of necessity, since Burnaby North-Seymour next election will screw him hard.
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Foucaulf
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« Reply #13 on: December 30, 2013, 01:52:11 pm »

Refresh my memory, Roguebeaver; did any opposition party talk about corruption during the last election? I seem to remember a wave of pundits saying how the Liberals needed to stick to more bread-and-butter issues. The extent to which the Senate Scandal has hurt Harper is a good signal against this: it's not that Canadians don't care about the state of democracy, but that it should be framed in terms of trust.

Kind of surprised at the 45/55 numbers on Mulcair's handling of the economy. Of course, now that U.S. growth figures are surpassing Canada's, we're going to see some convergence.


I'll offer up two pieces of news: The gay pressure group in the Conservative Party and George Smitherman's husband found dead. The second is lurid and hopefully bring up talk about mental health again. The first is typical, but I'll have to point out how they're all gay white males.
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