Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Former Quebec Green Party leader Scott McKay was elected as a PQ member in l'Assomption.
Former CSQ President Monique Richard was elected as a PQ member from Marguerite D'Youville.
Sunday, November 30, 2008
2. Tom Mulcair (QC)
3. Libby Davies (BC)
4. Judy Wasylycia-Leis (MB)
5. David Christopherson (ON)
6. Linda Duncan (AB)
Of course, it's just a prediction in the event that this coalition falls into place. The MSM is reporting that the NDP will get 6 cabinet seats. The NDP contingent will surely be regionally balanced and conform to the principle of gender parity.
Layton is a no-brainer. Davies has been a loyal Layton foot soldier and a solid performer. Wasylycia-Leis is also one of the party's shining stars in the House. Mulcair is in because he has cabinet experience and is from Quebec. Christopherson also has cabinet experience in the Rae government. My last pick was Duncan - admittedly, she's a rookie, but she'd make a wonderful Environment Minister. If not Duncan, expect Godin or Jack Harris to get the nod to give Atlantic Canada some representation in the NDP mini cabinet.
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
“I have the judgment, the character, the values and the experience to lead at very difficult time in the life of our country.”
And they said Dion had a poor command of the English language...
Sunday, November 9, 2008
I know Ontario mimics the federal leadership selction process and that Manitoba recently reverted to the delegated convention from a system of One Member One Vote. But what about the other provinces? Any idea... delegated convention, OMOV, or some other method?
Also, I'm wondering which provincial sections have spaces reserved for Labour representatives in the executive structure.
Leaving a comment with any insight would be greatly appreciated...
Tuesday, October 28, 2008
Saturday, September 20, 2008
Thursday, September 11, 2008
Newfoundland and Labrador
Friday, July 18, 2008
But he quickly ran into a bit of hot water by suggesting the NDP's policy supporting public funding of Catholic schools should be reviewed.
Prue says he thinks "it is time" that the party takes a look at the issue.
As handlers tried to stop the news conference, Prue insisted he wasn't trying to re-open the debate about religion and schools that caused so much trouble for Conservative Leader John Tory in last year's election.
And he insisted it would be up to someone else to bring forward the idea of changing the policy on school funding at the NDP's leadership convention next March.
Any candidate who is willing to champion this issue will carve out a pretty decent chunk of support. Do any of them have the political will?
Monday, July 14, 2008
1. He's too much like Howard Hampton (male, tied to the Rae government, and from Northern Ontario).
2. Despite being at Queen's Park since 1990, he has little name recognition. This won't help in a OMOV election.
3. He voted against the Endangered Species Act.
4. I can't imagine he will muster much, if any, support from the party's tiny caucus.
Sunday, July 13, 2008
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
Tuesday, July 1, 2008
Thursday, June 19, 2008
The format would almost certianly have a strong effect on the result. I doubt Hampton could have won a OMOV contest in 1996.
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
Asked if he'd be throwing his hat in for the party's leadership, Kormos repeated, "There's going to be all sorts of competent people putting their names forward, and I'm sure the people of Ontario will be excited by the campaign for the leadership of the New Democratic Party."
Here are the odds…
(2 to 1) Peter Tabuns. In actual fact, his leadership campaign started months ago. This former Greenpeace bigwig brings green credentials to the NDP and much of the Layton machine in Toronto Danforth will be supporting this charismatically-challenged MPP.
(3 to 1) Joe Comartin. This Windsor area MP was first elected in 2000 and finished with a disappointing result in the 2003 Federal NDP leadership race that crowned Jack Layton. Comartin clearly has leadership aspirations and will likely appeal to those who think the party needs someone from outside Queen’s Park to lead the team. The fact that he is from an area that is dominated by the Liberals provincially will make him an appealing candidate in a party with a tiny caucus with members who are not interested in stepping aside for a new leader.
(4 to 1) Micheal Prue. Prue has been rumoured to be interested in the job for some time, but it’s not clear which camps in the party he can appeal to and how he can differentiate himself from the other candidates. In a field of relative newcomers, he could argue that he is the most experienced, having served both provincially and municipally for many years, but that argument is unlikely to get him that far.
(4 to 1) Andrea Horwath. Elected in a 2004 by-election and re-elected in 2007, Horwath is still relatively unknown at Queen’s Park. However, the Hamilton area MPP’s name keeps popping up in leadership discussions. She is the most likely woman to run for the job.
(5 to 1) Cheri DiNovo. She seems like the perfect candidate. Urban, articulate, female, a fighter who overcame a smear campaign to beat the Liberals and what was considered a safe Liberal seat. She is relatively new, but has impressed many folks in and around Queen’s Park. Problem is, there is no evidence that she is actually interested in the leader’s job. She is more likely to endorse Tabuns than run herself.
(7 to 1) Peggy Nash. If this rookie Federal MP loses her Parkdale-High park seat to Gerard Kennedy in a federal election that takes place well in advance of the March 2009 Ontario NDP convention, she could conceivably run for ONDP leader as a consolation prize. She would have a great shot and lots of support, but this scenario is very unlikely.
(8 to 1) Marilyn Churley. This former MPP was no fan of Hampton. That’s why she left to take a stab at federal politics. She is still trying to break through as the current Federal NDP candidate in Beaches East-York. Besides, if she did win the Ontario NDP leadership, she’d have to ask potential leadership rivals Prue or Tabuns to step aside for her – an unlikely scenario. If a credible woman runs for the leadership of the Ontario NDP, expect Churley to endorse her.
(10 to 1) Peter Kormos. He ran for the leadership in 1996 and finished third, but his star has been rising in the party ever since. That said, Kormos has always maintained that the Ontario NDP needs to move beyond the Rae years and everybody associated with it. For better or for worse, Kormos was a controversial figure in the party during those years. Look for Kormos to be appointed interim leader sometime between now and the convention in March 2009 (especially if a credible left-wing candidate fails to emerge).
(50 to 1) Frances Lankin. This former MPP and current head of the Toronto United Way finished second to Howie in 1996. She was supposed to win. Will she answer the calls of the many New Democrats who are telling her that they won’t make the same mistake twice? Probably not.
(100 to 1) David Miller. The Mayor of Toronto is now a former New Democrat. However, re-joining the party would instantly make him the front-runner in this race. But why would he give up City Hall to be the leader of a third party rump at Queen’s Park.
Saturday, June 14, 2008
Beaches-East York MPP Michael Prue, Cheri DiNovo of Parkdale-High Park, Toronto-Danforth MPP Peter Tabuns and Hamilton Centre MPP Andrea Horwath.
You can read my old posts about this anticipated Ontario NDP leadership contest here, here and here.
Saturday, May 31, 2008
Thursday, May 22, 2008
Tuesday, May 13, 2008
Gaudreault, Maryse (P.L.Q./Q.L.P.) 45.24 %
Aubé, Gilles (P.Q.) 33.95 %
Clennett, Bill (Q.S.) 9.72 %
Gibb, Brian (P.V.Q./G.P.Q.) 7.20 %
Ruel, Jean-Philip (A.D.Q./É.M.D.) 3.23 %
The ADQ slid from third to fifth place in Hull, where Quebec Solidaire put in its only decent showing.
Kotto, Maka (P.Q.) 40.54 %
Thériault, Lyn (P.L.Q./Q.L.P.) 32.04 %
McKay, Scott (P.V.Q./G.P.Q.) 11.26 %
Mondor, Denis (A.D.Q./É.M.D.) 9.44 %
Legault, Gaétan (Q.S.) 4.41 %
Former BQ MP Maka Kotto cruised to victory in Bourget, besting Green Party leader Scott McKay who registered an impressive vote total. The ADQ fell from second to fourth place.
Léger, Nicole (P.Q.) 55.92 %
Dumais, Mélissa (P.L.Q./Q.L.P.) 21.74 %
Bellemare, Diane (A.D.Q./É.M.D.) 13.90 %
Daxhelet, Xavier (P.V.Q./G.P.Q.) 4.81 %
Pigeon, Marie Josèphe (Q.S.) 1.61 %
The result in this sovereignist stronghold was no surprise. The ADQ fell from second to third place.
Thursday, May 8, 2008
A punk rock cover of the famous Chinese cultural revolution song.
Here are the lyrics translated into English:
Socialism is good, socialism is good!
In socialist nations, the people have high status.
Overthrow the reactionaries. Imperialism flees with its tail between its legs.
The entire nation is in great unity and has raised the socialist construction to a new height, to a new height.
The people protect the socialist system.
The popular capacity is solid, the resistance of click reactionaries is dedicated to failure.
The socialist society will definitely succeed, a communist society will definitely be achieved, will definitely be achieved!
The Communist Party is good! The Communist Party is good!
The Communist Party is a good leader for the people.
It holds its promises and works of any heart for the people.
Firmly anchored to the Communist Party, it is necessary to complete, complete the construction of our great fatherland!
The Communist Party is good! The Communist Party is good!
The Communist Party guides China on the way of the power.
The popular capacity is solid, the resistance of reactionary cliques is destined to fail.
The socialist society will definitely succeed, a communist society will definitely be achieved, will definitely be achieved!
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
Thursday, May 1, 2008
Niagara Artists' Centre
Wednesday, April 30, 2008
Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Here's the a quote from Hampton's speech:
So what is to be done in those circumstances? There are a number of interests to consider. There are all of those people in the greater Toronto area who utilize the Toronto Transit Commission to get to work themselves and to get to doctor appointments and to get to school and to get their children to child care and do all the other things that happen in a very large urban agglomeration like this. There are also the issues of whether this city can even work minus the TTC on an ongoing basis. Finally, you have to consider, as I said earlier: Is there a likely prospect that things will be settled by further discussions at the bargaining table?
I think, on all of those fronts, the recognition arrived at yesterday is that there are serious interests here that need to be addressed-public interests, human interests, the interests of the city-and also the fact that bargaining is probably at an impasse. For that reason, we will support this legislation.
Hampton's entire premise is flawed. If an issue is hard to settle at the bargaining table, a strike or lockout raises the stakes and forces the parties to come to an agreement. Back-to-work legislation, on the other hand, forces an end to the labour dispute, but makes labour relations much worse in the long run because the process of collective bargaining becomes a charade.
In the past, the NDP has effectively stalled implementation of anti-union back-to-work laws. If the party thinks this move will help it make gains, I think they will be very disappointed.
Friday, April 4, 2008
Friday, March 28, 2008
Monday, March 24, 2008
Wednesday, March 19, 2008
Monday, March 10, 2008
How about the fact that the domain name ndp.on.ca is now pointing to Peter Tabuns' webpage? The domain name was registered back in 2000, six years before Tabuns was even elected to the legislative assembly.
Also, the brains behind this is rumoured to have abandoned the project at the urging of the Tabuns people, who would rather see Howie step down gracefully than pushed down the stairs.
Sunday, March 9, 2008
My father’s advice about the election was simple: “Always put God first..."
Oh brother... maybe losing her to Liberals wasn't such a terrible loss after all.
By the way, why does the Saskatchewan NDP continue to list her as an MLA?
Thursday, March 6, 2008
Here's a tip: try featuring your new leader.
Tuesday, March 4, 2008
Wednesday, February 27, 2008
ST. CATHARINES, ON, Feb. 26 /CNW/ - Tony Garofalo's Concrete Works Limited
was fined $120,000 and a supervisor fined $5,000 in the Ontario Courtof Justice after pleading guilty in the death of a worker in a trench collapse.
Justice of the Peace Carolyn Straughan heard that, on July 13, 2006, the company was waterproofing the basement walls of a home at 6200 Trillium Cres., Niagara Falls. Workers had dug a trench along the side of the house for the work. A worker was in the trench when its wall collapsed. The worker was buried under soil. Co-workers unsuccessfully tried resuscitation. The worker was pronounced dead at the scene.
A Ministry of Labour investigation found that the trench did not have shoring or a support system, as required under section 234(1) of OntarioRegulation 213/91, the Construction Regulation of the Occupational Health and Safety Act, nor was it sloped as defined in the regulation, section 234(2)(f).
The company pleaded guilty as a constructor to failing to comply with section 234(1) of Ontario Regulation 213/91, contrary to section 23(1)(c) of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Antonio Garofalo, supervisor of Tony Garofalo's Concrete Works Limited, pleaded guilty to failing to ensure that access to and egress from a work area below ground was from stairs, runway,ramp or ladder, as required by section 70(1) of Ontario Regulation 213/91. This was contrary to section 27(1)(a) of the Occupational Health and SafetyAct.
In addition to the fines, the court imposed a 25-per-cent victim fine surcharge, as required by the Provincial Offences Act. The surcharge is credited to a special provincial government fund to assist victims of crime.
Tuesday, February 26, 2008
Wednesday, February 20, 2008
Sunday, February 17, 2008
Most of the political blogosphere has already weighed in on Small Dead Animals' holocaust survivor prank. Warren Kinsella, the target of the prank, was unsurprisingly disgusted... and most other bloggers agreed with him.
But is the Holocaust completely off limits when it comes to comedy?
This clip from a documentary puts that difficult question into perspective for us.
Saturday, February 16, 2008
Read his post carefully and consider the following craziness contained within it:
1. He strangely equates ethnicity with language.
2. He refers to Quebec sovereignists as “Separatits” with a capital “S” as if they are some kind of professional sports team.
3. He ridiculously asserts: “Today's world, especially the work world, is a bilingual one” without any evidence whatsoever.
4. He ignores the fact that there are allophopne and anglophone sovereignists in Quebec.
5. He is incredibly patronizing towards sovereignists, arguing for example that “Quebec's separatists are robbing their youth of valuable skills”, “They are holding their own kids back”, and of course my favourite: “Opening ones mind doesn't make you any less of a person, it makes you more of one and gives the potential to be even greater.” Of course, having an open mind, according to Peterborough Politics, means opposing separatism…
6. Peterborough Politics argues :"Now this might just be me, but when I go to an Irish Pub, I expect to see and hear English, just as in the same way if I was to go to a fine French bistro, I would expect to hear and see French. Actually, if I attended said bistro and was bombarded by English or another language from the staff and the decor, I would be quite unimpressed with the experience and I probably wouldn't go back.” I wonder if he also expects to be served in Mandarin when he visits a Chinese buffet and in Italian when he visits a Pizza Place…
7. Overall, his analysis smacks of anglo-chauvinism, shows a complete misunderstanding for why the OLF exists, and completely mischaracterizes the attitudes of the vast majority of sovereignists in Quebec.
Thursday, February 14, 2008
Wednesday, February 13, 2008
Tuesday, February 12, 2008
Sunday, February 10, 2008
EDMONTON-BEVERLY-CLAREVIEW Currently represented by NDP MLA (and former Alberta NDP leader) Ray Martin. The New Democrats took this seat from the Tories in 2004 by a comfortable margin. Expect the NDP to retain this seat.
EDMONTON-HIGHLANDS-NORWOOD NDP leader Brian Mason has represented this riding since winning a 2000 by-election to replace former Alberta NDP leader Pam Barrett. Mason should be easily re-elected by a wide margin.
EDMONTON-CALDER Rookie NDP MLA David Eggen is the incumbent in this riding. He wrestled the seat away from the Tories in 2004 . Eggen won the riding by fewer than 500 votes last time around, but expect him to easily win re-election as an incumbent.
EDMONTON-STRATHCONA Former NDP leader and current NDP MLA Raj Pannu has decided not to seek re-lection in this NDP stronghold. In his place, The NDP is running labour lawyer Rachel Notley, daughter of former NDP leader Grant Notley. Expect the party to dump major resources into keeping this seat.
EDMONTON-GLENORA The NDP finished a close 2nd place to the Liberals in this low-income riding in 2004. In 2008, the party is running Arlene Chapman as its candidate. She is well-known within the party and within the community having served as an NDP staffer and as executive director of the Edmonton Social Planning Council. She ran in the 2006 federal election, garnering just under 20% of the vote in Edmonton East. This riding represents the party’s best chance for a new seat in 2008, especially if the Liberal vote collapses.
EDMONTON-ELLERSLIE This is a true long-shot for the NDP, but in the event that the Liberal and Tory campaigns takes a nosedive, this riding could fall into the party’s lap. This was one of very few ridings where the NDP won over 20% of the vote in 2004. Retired university professor Marilyn Assheton-Smith is once again carrying the NDP banner.
For consistent coverage of the Alberta election, be sure to consult the Calgary Grit and Daveberta on a regular basis.
Saturday, February 9, 2008
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, February 8th, 2008
"Noble" Actor Danny Glover and Ontario Labour Leaders Sentenced to $100 Fine for Trespassing
Justice of the Peace Moira Moses finds purpose of three defendants noble and their private prosecution by Canadian Niagara Hotels for trespassing unnecessary to protect the hotel's interests. Refuses to pass on $22,000 private prosecution costs to defendants.
Well-known actor and activist Danny Glover has been fined $100 by an Ontario Provincial Offences Court Justice of the Peace, as has UNITE HERE Canadian Co-Director Alex Dagg and Ontario Federation of Labour President Wayne Samuelson. The trio was convicted last month of trespassing under a rarely used private prosecution by a Niagara hotel company for entering the hotel during a union rally in September, 2006.
In sentencing the three, Justice of the Peace, Moira Moses found that the purpose of the three defendants was noble in trying to get into the hotel to speak with the owners about serious labour issues. She refused to pass on Canadian Niagara Hotel's $22,000 costs for the private prosecution to the three defendants, finding the prosecution was unnecessary to protect the interests of the hotel's owner, and found the company should have engaged in more good faith negotiations with the union.
"This sentencing decision really shows how silly Canadian Niagara Hotel's private prosecution has been," said Dagg. "It is outrageous that even though our courts are overwhelmed with serious cases and the police refused to charge us for entering the hotel lobby in 2006, this company has wasted its money and the court's time and tax dollars on this matter. We are glad the courts recognized this today and agree with Justice of the Peace Moses that this company should engage in more good faith negotiations with the union."
Dagg noted the union has received messages of support from across North America since word of the conviction became public in January and that the campaign by UNITE HERE to defend the rights of hospitality workers in Niagara Falls will continue.
"We are very appreciative of the support we've received from Niagara Falls and indeed, from people across North America, who join us in being outraged that this company has preferred to purchase a prosecution instead of dealing with their serious labour issues," said Dagg. "I want to personally thank Danny Glover for his incredible support and for helping raise awareness of the difficulties faced by workers at Canadian Niagara Hotel. I agree with Justice of the Peace Moses that our purpose was noble when we entered the hotel in September, 2006 and that Canadian Niagara Hotel's prosecution was unnecessary to protect their interests. It is a shame; they could have paid a room attendant for almost a year on the money they've wasted on this.
"Wayne Samuelson, President of the Ontario Federation, noted the private prosecution has only served as motivation for the rest of the Ontario labour movement to become even more involved in the struggle for workers' rights in Niagara Falls.
"The waste of the courts times by this company's private prosecution is a serious issue," said Samuelson. "But their rather strange response to Alex, Danny and I entering their hotel, has drawn attention to the bigger labour issues down here in Niagara and that is a good thing. Workers, from across this province, have expressed their support and their desire to become involved in the struggle for workplace justice in Niagara."UNITE HERE represents 50,000 hotel, food service, garment and manufacturing workers across Canada and 450,000 across North America. The union has been working with activists, like Danny Glover, to raise awareness of the issues facing hospitality workers across North America.
Friday, February 8, 2008
Air hockey has never been so political...
Best Political Blog
Best Progressive Blog
Best New Blog
Uncorrected Proofs managed a third place finish in Best Blog Post Series.
Thanks to all my readers and congrats to all the winners!
Thursday, February 7, 2008
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
2. Dutchblitz.net: Foto Friday
3. Uncorrected Proofs: A Short History of the Labour Movement in Canada and Quebec
4. (tie) One Old Green Bus: One Dozen Canadian Heroes
2. Calgary Grit
3. We Move To Canada
4. Uncorrected Proofs
5 .Stageleft: Life On The [Lower] Left Side
Thanks to my loyal readers who helped propel me into 4th place… how typically NDP.
Congrats to the other finalists and the winner.
Whenever I hear people complain about Stéphane Dion’s command of the English language my tendency is defend him against what are normally petty anglo-chauvinist criticisms. It’s harder to dismiss those criticisms when they are coming from Quebeckers, even if they are tongue-in-cheek.
Back in March 2007, when I met Dion in St. Catharines in a face to face meeting concerning the Liberal caucus position on Bill C-257, I wasn’t impressed by his speaking skills in English. He clearly struggled to string sentences together in a seamless way. However, understanding him wasn’t difficult. Over the course of the last year, his English has improved measurably. Each time I see him speak, I’m reminded of how much he has improved. In fact, I suspect that if we don’t have an election until 2009, Dion’s proficiency in English will no longer be an issue… well, at least for those of us who aren’t anglo-chauvinists.
Tuesday, February 5, 2008
1. Kennedy, a former provincial cabinet minister and MPP for Parkdale-High Park, is considered a star candidate and the likely victor in a race against Nash.
2. Nash is considered a rising star within the NDP.
3. Dion keeps touting how important it is to elect more women to parliament, but seems bent on defeating an incumbent female MP rather than run Kennedy in another, more Liberal-friendly riding in the GTA.
4. Liberals go on and on about how the the Harper Conservatives are the real enemy, and yet, rather than use Kennedy's star power to take on a Tory incumbent, they decided to run him against one of the most progressive NDP incumbents in the House.
Although I think the NDP is naive to think the Liberals would simply give Nash, or any other NDP incumbent a free ride, Jack Layton is right that Liberals are being hypocritical in their rhetoric by having Kennedy run against Nash. That said, the NDP is certainly not above hyporcrisy.
Case in point.
The NDP has made a big deal of the fact that labour leader Jean-Claude Rocheleau will be running for the party in the Montreal riding of Hochelaga. Hochelaga is currently represented by BQ MP Réal Ménard. Ménard is one of Canada's first openly gay MPs, he has an extremely progressive voting record and has been an outspoken advocate on anti-poverty issues. He may be the most left-wing member of the BQ caucus... so why is the NDP targeting Ménard?
Monday, February 4, 2008
The latest from CROP:
After the PQ's dismal performance in the 2007 Quebec provincial election, more than a few talking heads were eagerly awaiting the party's demise. However, less than a year later, the PQ has re-established itself as a strong political force in Quebec... indicating that the sovereigbnist movement is alive and well.
Funny how the mainstream media in English Canada have been playing down the positive results for the PQ in this latest poll with headlines like this.
Sunday, February 3, 2008
Feb 3 (Suffolk) Clinton 39, Obama 40
Feb 2 (Rasmussen) Clinton 44, Obama 45
Feb 2 (Reuters) Clinton 41, Obama 45
After leading in California for months, the Clinton campaign is faltering. If Obama can keep up this pace, he'll have a shot at defeating Clinton in the long run.
Saturday, February 2, 2008
2. Far and Wide: Critical, well-written, and insightful. Whenever a new a poll is released, look to this blogger to provide thoughtful analysis each and every time.
3. BigCityLib Strikes Back: Consistent, clever and to the point. An enjoyable read for any political junkie.
4. Scott's Diatribes: Although I find Scott's Diatribes to be among the most partisan of my favourite Liberal blogs, he is clearly committed to the idea of the political blogosphere and works to improve its stature, its quality, and its level of debate on a consistent basis.
5. A BCer in Toronto: A good combination of dry wit and sarcasm weaved into very well structured blog posts. He knows how to take good partisan shots, but is not uncritical of his own party.
Friday, February 1, 2008
In particular, I have been impressed by his opposition to black-focused schools, his threat to impose provincial tariffs to block imports of South Korean automobiles, and his firm stand against the Harper government's House of Commons seat redistribution bill that shortchanges Ontario.
Now that McGuinty is on a roll, would it be too much to ask the Ontario Liberals to reinstate card-based union certification for all of the province's workers? Gee, even the Peterson Liberals believed in that...
Thursday, January 31, 2008
As of midnight January 31, 2008, the polls for our 27 categories, have closed.
Our nerve center of super computers and statisticians are working through the night to bring you results. And what they will tell you is this:
The winners are being announced a little bit differently this year. Some of you were expecting to find out everyone who won an award as of January 31, 2008. In our instant gratification society it would make sense to tell you all of the winners at once. However, in the interest of building suspense and giving more winning blogs a longer 15 minutes of fame, the CBAs are going to present the winners over the course of the next week!
Wednesday, January 30, 2008
Obama has the support of UNITE HERE and Clinton has the support of AFSCME. If the unions that coalesced around Edwards move as a bloc towards one candidate, it could be enough to put either candidate over the top. Stay tuned.
Check out all of the finalists here.
Uncorrected Proofs is a finalist in the following categories:
Best political blog
Best progressive blog
Best new blog
Best blog post series
I don't expect to win in any of the categories.. heck I'm up against titans of the Canadian blogosphere in the first two categories... but whatever the final result, I do take comfort in knowing I garnered more votes than Jason Cherniak ;-)
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
Check it out:
Dymaxion World on Hillary Clinton.
Blogging a Dead Horse on Elizabeth May.
The Wheatsheaf on partisanship.
Accidental Deliberations on accidents waiting to happen.
Peterborough Politics on Question Period and public opinion polls.
However, the NDP also has room to grow, especially if the Liberals take a nosedive in the midst of an election campaign.
The following eight seats are what I see as the party’s priority targets:
Thunder Bay – Superior North
With incumbent MP Joe Comuzzi's decision to cross the floor from the Liberals to the Tories, this Northern Ontario riding is ripe for the picking. The NDP came within 309 votes of taking it in 2006, and represented the riding from 1984-1988.
Thunder Bay – Rainy River
This riding, which overlaps with the provincial riding of Ontario NDP leader Howard Hampton, was lost by roughly 700 votes to the party in 2006. The party did extremely well here in the 2007 provincial election and has a history of representing the area from 1984-1993.
A long history of NDP representation combined with the retirement of Liberal MP Raymond Bonin has given the NDP an unprecedented opportunity to win back this Northern Ontario riding. A provincial NDP stronghold, the federal party has come incredibly close to winning Nickel Belt in the last two elections.
Liberal incumbent John Maloney has lucked out through a series of vote splits in the 2000, 2004, and 2006 elections. This time, local New Democrats have wised up and nominated Malcolm Allen, deputy Mayor of Pelham, as their candidate. Allen and Welland’s longtime NDP MPP Peter Kormos act like Siamese twins at public events, indicating that the party thinks they have finally found a winning federal candidate. The NDP finished second here and came within 5% of knocking off the Liberals in 2006. Expect a close three way race in 2008.
Although the NDP dropped from 2nd to 3rd place between 2004 and 2006, the party is still very much in the game. If there is a shift away from the Liberals and towards the NDP in Northern Ontario (like the shift that took place in the 2007 Ontario election) expect the NDP to pick up this seat.
Beaches - East York
Former NDP MPP Marilyn Churley is back and ready for a rematch with Liberal incumbent Maria Minna. Churley is a favourite of Layton’s (she quit provincial politics for a federal run) and her riding is next door to the NDP leader’s riding. Expect a spill-over effect and additional resources to flow into this riding from across the GTA. Minna won by just over 5% last time. It will be a hard gap to overcome, but if anyone can do it in this riding, it's Churley.
This is the stomping ground of longtime (former) NDP MPP Bud Wildman. However, the party has never had much success here federally. In 2004 and 2006, the NDP put up a good fight, but fell marginally short. As a relative unknown, NDP candidate Carol Hughes almost won the seat for the NDP in 2006. She has now gained experience and the attention of the party leadership. Expect the central campaign to boost her fortunes this time around with additional resources.
Three time loser Sid Ryan will likely not offer himself up as a candidate for a fifth time, therefore making Oshawa even more of a longshot for the NDP. The presence of a Conservative rather than Liberal incumbent will only make it a harder hill to climb for the party. However, an unexpected Tory collapse could hand Oshawa over to the NDP. It’s a longshot for sure.
Monday, January 28, 2008
Layton’s speech briefly highlighted the historic roots of the NDP-labour alliance before turning his guns on Stephane Dion and the Liberals, whom he mocked and lambasted for sitting on their hands while workers endure a crisis in the manufacturing sector. Layton also gave us a sneak peak at the party’s election platform, suggesting it will focus on pocketbook issues like ATM fees, and credit card debt to woo voters who are feeling marginalized in the economy.
Layton didn’t mention Stephen Harper once during his ten minute speech, but virtually all of the questions from the audience had to do with Harper’s agenda.
By the end of the session, perhaps sensing the mood of his audience, Layton shifted gears and concluded the meeting by declaring "we've got to kick the shit out of this Harper government and replace them with enough NDP MPs to form or direct the next government."
I can understand why Layton focuses on Liberals... strategically, the top NDP targets in Ontario have Liberal incumbents. However, at what point will voters grow tired of an NDP that goes soft on the government while criticizing the Official Opposition? To be sure, there is lots to criticize when it comes to Stephane Dion, but after witnessing the dynamics of this meeting, I'm beginning to rethink the wisdom of the NDP's focus on the Liberals.
Sunday, January 27, 2008
That got me thinking… What does Canadian socialism smell like? Here are a few ideas for an NDP scent:
Using the aromatic essences of over a dozen working families in all regions of Canada, the NDP has produced a results-based perfume, Orange Blossoms. The fragrance of this exclusive socialist-inspired perfume represents a subtle blend of Saskatchewan potash and working class discontent, encapsulating the very essence of modern day social democratic politics.
Since politics is about power, the NDP chose a provincial fragrance for this socialist perfume, a symbol of hope for the working class. Pinko Potion is an explosion of socialism, a proletarian gift in a perfume bottle cut like soviet-style architecture. This working class perfume contains the scent of class struggle, capable of unleashing the antagonism of the people who wear it.
Saturday, January 26, 2008
Justseeds/Visual Resistance Artists' Cooperative is a decentralized community of artists who have banded together to both sell their work online in a central location and to collaborate with and support each other and social movements. Our website is not just a place to shop, but also a destination to find out about current events in radical art and culture. Our blog covers political printmaking, socially engaged street art, and culture related to social movements. We believe in the power of personal expression in concert with collective action to transform society.
Friday, January 25, 2008
2008 Presidential Campaign:
Huckabee: $2,345,796Check out MapLight.org
h/t to Nag on the Lake
Blackadder, quite cleverly in my opinion, has been using Facebook for progressive purposes: to organize workers. John Wood elaborates on Blackadder's organizing ban:
Derek got a note from the good book, telling him he was trying to add too many friends, and should calm down a bit, or else. Now as a union organiser, he’s quite likely to want to add lots of friends - it’s kind of what he does. So he waits a bit and tries again, and is told he can’t add any more at the moment and to wait and try later. Fair enough. He waits a bit more and tries again, same message. By now, he’s probably frothing at the mouth and muttering “must organise, must organise”, so he has another go to see if the coast is clear, and promptly gets himself a ban.
That being a ban from Facebook itself - no more profile, no access to the stuff he’s built up, no appeal.
So let’s try to get Derek back in. Come join (what else…) the Blackadder solidarity Facebook group. A very slim chance I grant you, but worth a pop to lobby Facebook on this one. Any ideas you’ve got for making this work - let us know!
If we do manage to get him reinstated, it’ll make Facebook a much safer place for all unions and activists to network (it‘s hardly going to inspire you to put in the effort if you only get kicked out for it). Just don’t ask Derek to add you as a friend though, or they’ll boot him out again. ;-)
From Eric Lee:
Yesterday, I wrote to all of you about the case of Derek Blackadder, the trade union organizer banned from Facebook for ... organizing.
You responded instantly and the word spread like wildfire. Within 8 hours, nearly 2,400 of you signed up to join the Facebook group protesting the ban on Derek.
Facebook has now removed the ban. We won.
Thursday, January 24, 2008
From UNITE HERE:
TORONTO, January 24th, 2008- Well-known actor and activist Danny Glover has been convicted, along with UNITE HERE Canadian Co-Director Alex Dagg and Ontario Federation of Labour President Wayne Samuelson, for trespassing in an Ontario Provincial Offences Court, after being charged under a rarely used private prosecution by a Niagara hotel company.
“It is sad that even though the police acknowledged everyone was well behaved and did not press charges, a rich and powerful company can pay to go forward with a private prosecution,” said Dagg. “It raises serious questions for all of us who believe in fairness and equality before the law but it will, in no way, deter us from continuing to stand up for what is right.”
The case against UNITE HERE organizer, Catalina Gonzalez was dismissed outright and Dagg said UNITE HERE will continue to vigorously defend the rights of workers in the Niagara region.
“Our members who work in these hotels have been demanding justice in their workplace for years and that is where we will continue to focus our energy,” said Dagg. “Our union has a proud history of standing up for justice in the workplace and for establishing those rights through the laws of our land. Today we are reminded that struggle is not over. The rights of working people - to express themselves and advocate for better working conditions - is fundamental. We will be reviewing all of our options, including the possibility of an appeal.”
Wayne Samuelson, President of the Ontario Federation agreed.
“I have attended union rallies and gone to speak to employers with labour problems for decades in this province and I’ve never seen anything like this,” said Samuelson. “The Ontario labour movement will not be deterred by this decision today and will continue to utilize our Charter rights to stand up for working people across this province. It is wrong that those with money can go above the police and purchase a prosecution in this province and we will stand our ground against such tactics.”
The sentence will be handed down on February 8th, 2008. Danny Glover has been working with UNITE HERE to raise awareness of the issues facing Niagara area hotel workers who are fighting to improve working conditions. Canadian Niagara Hotels (CNH) owns the Sheraton on the Falls, the Brock Plaza Hotel and the Skyline Inn in the Clifton Hill neighborhood of Niagara Falls, Ontario. The hotels were purchased in 1993 by Dino DiCienzo and his company Canadian Niagara Hotels.
A website dedicated to renewal in the Ontario NDP is currently under development.
I’m told NDPrenewal.org is essentially a “Dump Howard Hampton website,” but focuses on other aspects of party renewal as well (fundraising, internal party democracy).
Who runs the website?
A simple internet search turned up the following:
Registrant Name:Back Blast
Registrant Organization:BackBlast Design c/o Free Private Reg
Registrant Street1:P.O. Box 81024
Registrant Postal Code:V5H4K2
Stay tuned. Hopefully, Howard Hampton’s dismal tenure as leader of the Ontario NDP is about to come to an end…
Read more about Ontario NDP leadership speculation here, here , here and here.
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
Best political blog
Best new blog
Best blog post series
Best progressive blog
I suspect my friend Nag on the Lake helped push me over the top in the first round of voting. In appreciation, I’m asking my readers to help propel the Nag to victory in the following categories:
Best entertainment/cultural blog
Best humour blog
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
Labour Leaders will be in Court to Defend Charter Rights: Thurs Jan 24th
NIAGARA FALLS January 21, 2008 - Well-known actor and activist Danny Glover will be told if the courts will be upholding his rights to peaceful assembly and free speech on behalf of Canadian hotel employees, along with UNITE HERE Canadian Co-Director Alex Dagg and Ontario Federation of Labour President Wayne Samuelson. The trio will be gathered to hear the courts decision which will be the end of a long and rare private prosecution, initiated by Canadian Niagara Hotels (CNH) after a September 2006 union rally at the Sheraton on the Falls in Niagara Falls.
Samuelson and Dagg will appear with criminal lawyer Frank Addario and co-defendant Catalina Gonzalez, a UNITE HERE organizer, at a Niagara Falls courthouse on Thursday, January 24th. The verdict will bring to a close two days of testimony last October that concerned Charter arguments and the impact on the Ontario labour movement of companies using private prosecutions to limit union's free speech, expression, association and assembly rights.
Alex Dagg, Canadian Co-Director, UNITE HERE
Wayne Samuelson, President, Ontario Federation of Labour
Frank Addario, Sack Goldblatt Mitchell Where:
Provincial Offences Court
4635 Queen Street West, Niagara Falls, Ontario
Date: Thursday, January 24th, 2008
Time: The verdict is scheduled to be given at 10:30. Participants may be able to speak to the media after court is dismissed.
Dreamgirls and Lethal Weapon star Danny Glover has been working with UNITE HERE to raise awareness of the issues facing Niagara area hotel workers who are fighting to improve working conditions. Canadian Niagara Hotels (CNH) owns the Sheraton on the Falls, the Brock Plaza Hotel and the Skyline Inn in Niagara Falls, Ontario. Workers at the Brock Plaza have been unionized since 1942. The hotels were purchased in 1993 by Dino DiCienzo and his company Canadian Niagara Hotels. Since then union/management relationships have been difficult and UNITE HERE has been fighting to uphold basic parts of the collective agreement. UNITE HERE represents 50,000 hotel, food service, garment and manufacturing workers across Canada and 450,000 across North America.
Monday, January 21, 2008
Consider the numbers:
Conservative: 62 seats with 47% of the vote
Liberal: 16 seats with 29% of the vote
NDP: 4 seats with 10% of the vote
Alliance: 1 seat with 9% of the vote
Greens: 0 seats with 3% of the vote
Conservative: 58% +11
Liberal: 19% -10
NDP: 9% -1
Alliance: 5% -4
Greens: 9% +6
Sunday, January 20, 2008
Thursday, January 17, 2008
What a tangled Web...: Registering domain names makes online politicking tricky
NIAGARA FALLS - Larry Savage owns "Wayne Thomson."
Savage bought waynethomson.com, an Internet domain name he's using to criticize the Niagara Falls mayor online. It's bound to create confusion for Thomson's re-election campaign, which used that Internet address in 2000.
"I don't want voters to forget about the mess the mayor has created down at city hall," said Savage, who has said he does not intend to be a candidate in November's municipal election. The York University student from Niagara Falls has fired political shots from the sidelines for years. When Internet users type in waynethomson.com, they're directed to a subdirectory of a Web site Savage created earlier this year. Savage, who fought city hall to keep the ward system, started politicaldiscord.com to criticize council decisions.
The waynethomson.com site identifies itself as the "unofficial web site" for Thomson. It mimics a page on the city's official Web site (city.niagarafalls.on.ca) that lists Thomson's accomplishments. "In that respect, it's sort of a spoof of his own Web page," Savage said.
Because Web sites are so prominent, computer users often look for sites of celebrities and companies by typing their names and adding the common dot-com suffix.
Thomson said he plans to use a political Web site of his own as part of his re-election campaign, which will begin in early January. Thomson said he believed he would be able to use waynethomson.com again because he used it before.
"It looks like an under-handed trick, like we've been dealing wwith the Web site he has set up," Thomson said, reacting to Savage's move.
Savage and Thomson have sparred over the content on Savage's Web site before.
In October, Thomson said he would react appropriately - including taking legal action - when his character is "impugned."
Savage launched the spoof site Friday, just five days before the 2003 campaign period officially begins. Since then, the site has been accessed nearly 200 times, he said.
It lists 13 controversies Thomson has been involved in since 1991. It describes the libel lawsuit against Thomson for his comments about a Chippawa couple in 1998 (Thomson counter-sued and the matter was settled out of court). It criticizes him for negotiating "a poor casino revenue deal" with the Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corp.
The site also accuses Thomson of contradicting himself at times during council meetings. Savage has also bought the dot-com names for city aldermen Norm Puttick, Selina Volpatti, Victor Pietrangelo and Ken Feren, which link to his main site. It cost Savage about $25 apiece to register all the domain names, he said.
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
Gilles Duceppe has solid trade union credentials as a former union staffer and most of Quebec’s labour leaders are solidly in the sovereignist camp even if their unions are not officially backing the Bloc. For example, recall that While Buzz Hargrove was calling on his members in English Canada to vote Liberal to stop Stephen Harper Harper in 2006, the Quebec section of the CAW was endorsing the BQ and actively working to unseat Liberals. The BQ has also been the key player behind repeated attempts to have a federal anti-scab bill passed into law and several of its MPs come from union backgrounds.
The relationship between the Quebec Federation of Labour (the largest trade union central in Quebec) and the NDP is virtually non-existent. The political outlook of the FTQ often conflicts with the centralist policy agenda of the NDP. Although on paper the NDP advocates asymmetry in Canadian constitutional matters, in practice, the New Democrats tend to sway with the political winds on this issue (witness the party’s flip flop on the Clarity Act in 2006). Organized labour in Quebec has had difficulty in embracing the NDP because of fundamental ideological and philosophical differences which exist as a result of constitutional issues. The Quebec labour movement's strong support of decentralization and limits on the federal spending power stands in sharp contrast to the NDP's economic nationalism and preference for a strong central government to set national standards. These contradictory policy preferences were slightly blurred during the Charlottetown Accord talks when the NDP negotiated away many of its core centralizing policy positions, but the NDP compromise did not come close to fulfilling the aspirations of the Quebec working class.
The FTQ’s 2004 convention, in a policy paper entitled “Présents sur tous les Fronts”, reaffirmed its commitment to operating with complete political independence in the realm of electoral politics. After amending its constitution to sever its official ties to the NDP in 1971, the FTQ has chosen to endorse parties in elections on a case-by-case basis. Since 1988, the FTQ has required a special convention resolution in order to endorse a political party in a provincial election campaign. In the 2003 Quebec provincial election, for example, the FTQ chose not to endorse a party and instead ran a third party campaign against the upstart ADQ. In 2007, the FTQ backed the PQ and has generally been supportive of the BQ at the federal level.
The argument is often made that labour parties like the NDP and unions are united through a common ideological commitment to social democracy. In Quebec, the common ideological commitment between unions and parties revolves around the national question, not social democracy. Whereas the PQ and BQ see sovereignty as the ultimate goal, the labour movement in Quebec views sovereignty as a means to an end, namely, social democracy. Until the NDP can come up with a consistent position on the national question (which is acceptable to Quebec nationalists), it is unlikely to win significant trade union support.