Lord Bob

Lord Bob

69p

285 comments posted · 5 followers · following 0

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - Four parties enter, tw... · 1 reply · +6 points

I don't think it is an anti-global warming bounce (hey, what's the NDP's position on anthropogenic global warming? How'd they do today?).

Some of the lost votes are, as Elizabeth May insistently says every time there's a microphone within ninety feet of her, that she wasn't in the debate so she had less exposure. But they weren't in the debates apart from 2008 and did fairly well anyway post-2000.

Anecdotally, I know a few Green-sympathetic voters who just don't like Elizabeth May. People who wound up going Dipper or anybody-but-Harper. There's definitely a perception in parts of the Canadian environmentalist movement that the Green Party of Canada is increasingly in the Elizabeth May business, not the environmentalism business. Well, now May's an MP representing a party whose campaign, if Gary Lunn hadn't completely self-immolated, would have been considered a colossal disappointment.

We'll see what happens.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - Four parties enter, tw... · 3 replies · +6 points

Electoral reform is a bloody complicated question (even in British Columbia, a referendum to eliminate FPtP went down in flames a few years back). There's something to be said for local accountability and connections and, as I've discovered while campaigning for electoral reform myself, some Canadians approve of that. This isn't even a left-vs.-right thing for the most part.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - Four parties enter, tw... · 3 replies · +6 points

Lost in the "rise of the Greens" narrative: this is the worst performance of the Greens in the popular vote since 2000. They lost over a third of their support from the 2008 election. But in Saanich-Gulf Islands there was absolutely no vote-splitting against May: there was a reason she decided to run in that seat rather than in an area where she'd lived or worked. Very strong Green territory which received huge resources from the party.

May's election is a great moment for the party, but if you're a Green candidate not named Elizabeth May you just had an awful night at the office. Maybe she can capitalize on this momentum, but the Greens had an MP heading into 2008 too and that didn't work out for them.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - Four parties enter, tw... · 5 replies · +2 points

Well, one of those consequences is that the Conservative Party no longer particularly reflects the principles of the Reform Party.

The New Democrats and the Liberals would face the same obstacle if they merged. The Liberals would tone down their pro-business attitudes, the New Democrats would forfeit their traditional union friendliness, for example. They'd lose some of what made them Liberals and New Democrats in the first place.

Is it worth getting power if you can't spend the power on what you think is right? I'm not sure. I might be the last guy on earth who thinks uniting the right was, arguably, not worth it.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - A price must be paidâ€... · 0 replies · +15 points

A protest vote is futile. You may as well stay home.

I hear a lot of people say that. If all the people who said that and stayed home last time (or who "voted strategically" or whatever other abominations against good governance) actually went out and voted their conscience, our political system would be a lot better off.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - A price must be paidâ€... · 6 replies · +5 points

True - but the aptly-nicknamed Cons failed miserably.

Oh, they sure did! And that's my point. Voters and pundits got behind the Conservative Party because they promised accountability, responsibility, democracy, etc. They got none of those things. Why? Because the Conservative Party is an old-school party like the Liberals: far from having an interest in changing the system, the Conservatives are half the group who made it.

If anything, the post-Martin Conservatives were more dedicated in theory to cleaning up Parliament than the current, Ignatieff Liberals: the Conservatives promised the Accountability Act (and actually delivered; a rare campaign promise kept!) and to clean up Parliament. The Liberals are just generally promising change and imploring us to "rise up" like a Bruce Springsteen concert.

Which is why I think a vote for one of the minor parties is at least a vote for something different and a genuine wake-up call to the Big Two. I wonder how many Green voters are just Generic Protest Voters? I can definitely sympathize with those who are.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - A price must be paidâ€... · 8 replies · +18 points

I meant to tie Chretien/Martin together in terms of Liberal regimes, not in terms of personalities.

I didn't mind Martin too much as a Prime Minister, but he had the same MPs as Chretien, most of the same party staff as Chretien. The Liberals changed the boss but they didn't change the organization, and it's not like Chretien was just some lone kleptomaniac at the top collecting signed golf balls while his underlings stumbled blindly through the fog.

And in any case, the big meme of that election campaign was accountability; that's where we got the famous Accountability Act and its associated infamous talking point. Much of the media, and presumably the electorate, perceived the Conservative minority as delivering the same blow in favour of democracy and accountability that Andrew now hopes a Liberal government will deliver.

333 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - A price must be paidâ€... · 12 replies · 0 points

Replacing the Chretien/Martin Liberals with the Harper Conservatives didn't send a message about accountability and transparency, unless it's "they're optional."

Basically, I agree with your objectives but differ with your tactics. Expressing your disgust with business-as-usual politics by voting for the other business-as-usual party is, at best, shuffling deck chairs. Meanwhile, the NDP as well as the Greens and whatever other minor parties are available in your riding are at least outsiders. They have a vested interest in changing the status quo as well as no real chance they'll form that government they're not ready for.

342 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - Don't seniors deserve ... · 5 replies · +3 points

I do think you are being a little to glib about apparently discounting the idea that there are certain expectations between aging parents and their grown children - the purpose of children might not always be explicitly, 100% to take care of the parents later on, but that element does exist.

Damn, where did I sign that contract? I'll have to check my file cabinet.

Listen, I love my parents and I'll do what I can for 'em. But ultimately, if my mom and dad wanted my brother and I to finance their dotage, they probably should have had more than two kids: short of my little bro and I tacitly agreeing to shove the more senile parent off the High Level Bridge, I find it hard to believe how each of us are going to both finance our own families and a parent and, hell, given our ever-expanding ability to push the dying of the light further and further back, maybe a couple grandparents too.

I am, however, also pleased to report that in my case both my parents have been industriously working and saving for their retirements and they'll probably hardly need our help at all. If they hadn't... well, regardless of what the "certain expectations" might have been...

343 weeks ago @ Macleans.ca - The Oda ado: overblown? · 1 reply · +2 points

I fully agree the LPC would be trying to make Bev Oda out as the bad guy even if the Conservatives were perfect saints. I'm more referring to the chattering classes (like Andrew Coyne!) depriving the Conservatives of the benefit of the doubt because well, this is the sort of thing they do, isn't it?