NDP Brings Greens Most Pinecones

Title in honour of a Beaverton joke.

I’m excited that this is the first time the Green Party has been directly involved in governing a province anywhere in North America. I expect great things from the NDP/Green coalition, majority government there. Clark should resign soon.

Opposed to Coalition?

Yesterday’s news:

Today’s news:
Most Canadians are opposed to a coalition government. Presently the only party with the word “coalition” in its founding documents is the Conservative Party of Canada, and yes it’s true as Trudeau said today, that most Canadians are opposed to the Conservative government.

The problem is, if you have a real conversation with Canadians, you’ll learn they aren’t really opposed to a coalition government, they are just afraid of political instability they’ve associated with coalition and proportional representation electoral systems. They’ll unfailingly mutter about Italy having so many elections, and overlook the countries with proportional systems that are not unstable, and have better social programs and democratic participation than Canada manages.

Tomorrow’s news:

New Conservative Party? Yes Please

I’ve felt badly for a while now that conservative voters have no ethical right wing party to vote for in Canada (or the USA, for that matter). The Conservative Party of Canada is the only Canadian political party with the word “coalition” in its Constitution. The CPC coalition of the Canadian Alliance and Progressive Conservatives, removed right wing voters’ choice, so Harper’s new CPC could more easily cheat their way to victory.

With the future crop of Conservative Party of Canada MPs already heading toward jail, what are conservative voters to do? The present parade of perps, is patently preposterous. Do they stay home? Vote Liberal? Hold their noses and vote for more election fraud and other crime while simultaneously endorsing unbalanced budgets and the bigger Harper Government?

I’m opposed to the Liberals, NDP, and Greens merging their distinct parties, since electoral cooperation can be achieved without uniting under one (corruptible) banner. Putting all eggs into one basket is an efficient means to move them from point A to Ottawa, but you’ll never unpack those eggs when they get to Ottawa. They’ll be “Ottawashed”, says Rathgeber. A multi-party system serves Canada best, since there are many distinct regions with their own interests. The problems have been a lack of electoral reform (to keep pace with technology), and a centralization of power in party leaders, the unelected staff of the PMO, and an antiquated, unaccountable, appointed Senate.

The Conservative Coalition

I haven’t bothered to double check this little amusing fact, because I have no reason to assume it’s incorrect.

There is only one federal party in Canada that calls for the creation of a coalition. Of the four major political organizations, there is only one that has in its constitution as one of its founding principles the responsibility to develop such a union. It isn’t the Green Party, it isn’t the Liberals, it’s not even the NDP. The party that believes in coalitions so much is the same party that opposed them as undemocratic in 2009; the Conservative Party of Canada.

It should be pointed out that there is nothing undemocratic about coalition governments. They often result in majority governments, and bad laws get shot down because at least one important part of the coalition realizes they will have their electoral chances hurt if they move against the people.

Who Won in Wascana? The “Losers”

The non-voting bloc won. Or might I say, they almost certainly didn’t get what they wanted, or didn’t try for what they wanted.

The federal riding of Wascana is the only Liberal seat in both Alberta and Saskatchewan, and will probably remain that way for the next 5 years. The results of it are interesting, as are many of Canada’s 308 elections, because the non-voting adults could have singularly elected a different candidate without changing other voters’ votes.

Voter turnout: 38,777 of 57,034 registered electors (68.0%) = 18,257 non-voters
Liberal Ralph Goodale 15,842 40.9%
Conservative Ian Shields 14,292 36.9%
NDP Marc Spooner 7,689 19.8%
Green Party Bill Clary 954 2.5%

My critics may say, “Yeah, but Goodale [or insert your “winning” MP in place of his name] got the single most votes of those who ran.” My critics would technically be correct, but it’s also technically correct to say that he got the most votes of the available candidates, who all failed to suitably impress at least half of the electorate enough to mark an X beside his name.

As Stephen Harper said before the election campaign, “Losers don’t get to form coalitions“.

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Saskboy Rips Down This Wall

I’ve never been less pleased to have Brad Wall as the Premier of my province, than I am today. He’s made a fool of himself for the short term political gain of his Conservative buddies in Ottawa, and placed Saskatchewan in a difficult position should the Conservatives lose power in May or later this year as polls suggest they will.

By erroneously claiming that Canada’s parliamentary democracy works in a way that does not exist, he’s done a disservice to people who look to political leaders for advice on properly functioning governments in Canada’s democratic systems. He does not get to unilaterally decide that coalitions are anti-democratic coups, because they are not. Saskatchewan had a coalition government a decade ago, and there was still another election (and another) where he democratically took power. The UK has a coalition government right now!

Brad Wall is leveraging his party’s apparently unbeatable polling numbers, and this province’s reputation, to injure Michael Ignatieff’s reputation unfairly. Brad Wall is now a disgrace to this province! He should retract his letter, and apologize to the people of Saskatchewan, and to Canadians for foisting his unfounded opinion onto us through his esteemed official title.

ADDED: Leftdog weighs in, as I expected.

ADDED: Mandryk adds more, while Gormley adds something that stinks like Wall’s brand of partisan BS.

Attack Ads Don’t Work Because You’re Smart?

If attack ads don’t work, then why have I heard them repeated to me by ordinary Canadians even though the ads contain fabrications and distortions that a child should be able to see through when it is explained to them?

Why is the “coalition” a “threat” or a “coup”? Why is Ignatieff not “coming back for you”? Why are the Greens a “one issue” party?

Because they’re not! Period. Each of those is an untruth (a lie) paid for sometimes with the help of your tax money (in the form of tax rebates to citizen donors, or 10%ers in the mail), and often as the result of money that should not be allowed to shape political thought in a democracy. And each I’ve heard ordinary Canadians say as if they are facts. When lies are accepted as facts, democracy dies a bit more, and that’s not my claim — it’s backed by history.

There are too many fooled people in Canada, and bad people are poised to reap the rewards of the misinformation they’ve sown into the brains of the unwitting. The question is, are Canadians going to be annoyed enough by the attack parties to do something about it before their freedom of thought is replaced by freepdom of thought?

Canadians stopped allowing cigarette advertising because we admitted it was killing people. The same realization needs to spread about political advertising that contains lies and kills our democracy. When commoners lose their ability to peacefully influence the political system in Canada, we know that people will die (rebellions and revolutions are never without casualties, and they do happen even in Canada too, sadly).