Monday, January 28, 2008
Sunday, January 27, 2008
As an active and dedicated Young Liberal, it makes me proud to say that I fully endorse the OYL Roots slate at the AGM. A simple look at the numbers shows why the Roots team cannot be topped:
5 Current OYL Executive Members
6 Former or Current OYL Area Coordinators
6 Former or Current OYL Student Club Presidents
8 Former or Current OYL Student Club Executive Members
8 Former or Current OYL Riding Club Presidents
5 Current OYL Riding Club Executive Members
4 Former Campaign Youth Chairs
6 Former or Current Summer Employees at Queen’s Park or Parliament Hill
5 Former or Current Constituency Office Employees
2 OYL Volunteer of the Year Award Winners
1 OYL Club President of the Year Award Winner
2 OYL Student Club of the Year Award Winners
1 Former Campaign Manager
1 Leadership National Youth Director
1 OWLC Executive Member
1 LPCO Organization Committee Representative
11 Campuses Represented
Beyond experience, the Roots team and it's dedicated members can deliver the refreshing change that the OYL wants and needs. The slate is strength followed by strength, and I know the members have both the ideological zest, and the experience, to help the OYL move forward and act as one of the great forces for progressive policy in this country. So I urge Young Liberals across Ontario to come together and join this great force for progress that is the OYL Roots slate!
Oh, right. Ok, everything makes sense now.
Friday, January 25, 2008
When Don Stephens says he wants more Christianity, in public schools, is this what he has in mind? While Don is a public school trustee, he seems to want to emulate religious school values and morals. Is Don's Conservative Party vision for Mississauga South one where LGBTQ students are rejected? Kathleen Wynne is right to criticize the negative responses.
While the Harper government continues to go from scandal to scandal, the style has distinctly changed. In less than a week, we've gone from midnight firings of independent experts, to backtracking, flip flopping, and about faces. You never know what these guys will do next!
Thursday, January 24, 2008
This article was in the Mississauga News, but can't be found on the website, so I'm taking these quotes directly from the text.
"There is a gap across numerous schools in regard to the major religion of Canada, which is the Christian faith"
"At a number of schools there was minimal, or a total neglect, in representing the Christian faith"
Stephens then asked what steps the administration had taken "to ensure that schools understand and represent Christianity"
Given the multicultural nature of Mississauga South, Stephens comments are likely more an appeal to the base of the Conservatives, rather than an actual policy proposal, but it is still unsettling. When Stevens calls Christianity the "major religion" of Canada, I simply think back to my days at Port Credit Secondary School, a wonderfully diverse place (which would have had its diversity ruined if John Tory and Tim Peterson had had their way) where yes, a balanced and informative Religion class was taught, and students of all faiths intermixed, and where Christianity was by no means the major religion of the school. The Canadian multicultural and multi religious way could be best seen at Port Credit in the way each holiday and season during the year had a student run event for it, so within the same school year you could see and hear Christmas carols, Hindu food and dancing, and Muslim Friday prayers in the drama room. These were all examples of students, as private individuals, displaying faith in a communal setting, and it sets a wonderful example for Canadian multicultural policy being a success. Stephens demands that public, secular institutions formalize Christian supremacy would be a step back.
Issues like these and faith based funding show the clear difference between Liberals and Conservatives on our multicultural society. Liberals believe in cultural exchange and co-operation, finding unity in diversity, while Conservative are stuck in the colonial mindset that somehow each group will be happier if they keep to themselves and accept the dominance of superior culture. In an area as diverse as Mississauga, we can't afford to move backwards on multiculturalism.
Sunday, January 20, 2008
This article gives a good idea of why the Liberals are the best party for Ottawa, both provincially and federally. My current MP, NDP'er Paul Dewar, sticks his head into city business, disrespecting jurisdictional boundaries in crude attempts to win political support and build his profile in a swing riding as he faces a very strong challenge in Penny Collenette.
Dewar...has got into the habit of firing off news releases in matters where his role as a federal representative has no place.
Of course, being a Dipper, Dewar probably believes the federal government should be involved everywhere.
If Dewar cared so much...where was he during the city's budget deliberations late last year when he could have actually made a difference in lobbying council?
Because this would require actual effort and taking a stand for progressive policy for the people of Ottawa, such as how the NDP propped up the Conservatives on the environment issue with the Clean Air Act, as opposed to Penny Collenette's work on the environment (http://www.pennycollenette.ca/_pdf/OttawaCitizen_Waterqualityistickingtimebomb.pdf)
"It looks like he's just jumping on a bandwagon," Coun. Rainer Bloess said, adding there's a difference between speaking out as a citizen and "political grandstanding for the sake of publicity."
A Dipper putting grandstanding and rhetoric ahead of actual hands on policy responsibility? Shocking I tell you.
Dewar's interference can be seen as a a companion to Pierre Poilievre, who as a Conservative MP has a negative reflex reaction to any political body making decisions which aren't triple checked by Ian Brodie.
Coun. Steve Desroches:
"We really don't need these 11th-hour antics,"
(Conservative MPP) MacLeod and Poilievre "should stay out of city business."
Coun. Peter Hume:
"Why is the city being criticized for adhering to provincial and federal regulations?"
Coun. Jan Harder:
"Writes off Poilievre's silliness as immaturity."
On the other hand, former Ottawa mayor and current provincial Liberal minister Jim Watson helps Ottawa keep moving forward by acting "Only when it affects the relationship between city and province. His professionalism should be studied and copied."
Thursday, January 17, 2008
Look, even from a non-partisan perspective, these trains are awesome. I grew up less than a minute away from the Port Credit GO station, and take the GO train (when I'm actually in Mississauga) at least once or twice a week, so GO Trains formed a significant role in my life.
Anyway, good on Dalton for getting these things, blah blah blah, good for the environment, blah blah, help the economy and reduce congestion blah blah. Lets not get distracted from the central theme: These trains (and trains in general) are awesome. If Dion makes "Parliament will pass a motion recognizing the awesomeness of trains" plank, the Liberals will win a majority, guaranteed.
Monday, January 14, 2008
While some of the rhetoric in this piece is a bit more extreme and leftist than my own personal views, in general this sums up a lot of the reasons why I am not supporting Clinton. (Although I do like her more than Edwards).
Friday, January 11, 2008
So the Conservatives are trying to curry favour with Conservative-described "small men of Confederation" (the Premiers of the largest and most important provinces in Confederation) by throwing some cash at the struggling industrial sectors of those provinces economies. Now, even though the money is nowhere near the level which would be useful for the provinces, particularly Ontario (which the Conservatives have generally been only too happy to ignore) any sort of support is welcome, so you would expect the federal money for these crucial industries, in the most crucial provinces in Confederation, to start flowing as soon as the announcement was made, with no pre-conditions, right?
Well, if one cared about the economic well being of Central Canada, and the implications for national unity which it has, then you would think yes. If you were the Conservative government, the answer is of course, no. The money is entirely reliant on the passing of the next budget, effectively taking the fate of thousands of unemployed workers in Central Canada hostage and using them as an election issue. Both McGuinty and Charest were quick to jump on this:
"I don't think forestry workers of Quebec deserve to be part of the election campaign (that would ensue should the budget be defeated). They need the help now and we should be moving now"-Charest
" ...In the grand scheme of things, it is not commensurate with the level of need and the sense of urgency...Either the need is urgent or it is not. And if it is urgent then you take all steps to ensure that that money flows unconditionally."-McGuinty
In addition to turning the Canadian economy into a game on the eve of a recession, the Conservatives are also ignoring one of their favourite targets, women, according to a source no higher than Canada's only female Prime Minister, and Conservative, Kim Campbell.
"...The small number of women in Stephen Harper's Conservative cabinet signals the issue is a low priority for his government."
"it is important because the only way you open up doors for women is by giving them an opportunity to hold these positions to make it seem like a natural thing"
"Women such as Immigration Minister Diane Finley, Bev Oda at International Development and Heritage Minister Josee Verner have few speaking opportunities during question period, and are almost never available to speak to reporters either after question period or caucus meetings. They very rarely chosen by government strategists to appear on political news programs to field questions."
We've seen obvious Conservative hostility towards "uppity" women in moves such as funding cuts and the destruction of the Charter Challenges program, but to my knowledge this is the first time someone as high as an Conservative ex-PM has been openly critical of the Conservative government on this issue. Contrast this with the Liberal Pink Book, and Dion's bold (and so far kept) promise of 1/3rd women candidates, and it is no surprise that women flock towards the Liberals as fast as they are almost deliberately repelled from the Conservatives. To go beyond federal scene, and look at the provincial, people of Mississauga South will remember what happened when the Conservatives ignored a well qualified, hard working, politically active woman in Effie Triantafilopoulos. The result was a massive Liberal victory.
Wednesday, January 9, 2008
Tuesday, January 8, 2008
-Obama wins by around 8-9% over Clinton
-Edwards finishes a relatively distant third, not breaking 20%
-Richardson performs poorly, but manages to hang on to 4th spot, as Dennis Kucinich has a minor bounce
-No one will drop out"
Obviously I got the most important prediction wrong, although to my credit most polls and pundits had Obama winning. Clinton managed to win support with women that she didn't get in Iowa, probably due in large part to the large turn out of older women, who tend to be Clinton loyalists. Age and experience beat youth and change, for now, at least. I was right about Edwards doing poorly, but Richardson failed to really collapse, and Kucinich had no real bounce.
-McCain wins by 4-5% over Romney
-Huckabee finishes in third in the low teens, which for him is ok, as he didn't really focus on this state as it lacks the same kind of evangelical social conservatives that Iowa has
-Ron Paul and Rudy Giuliani battle for 4th, with Giuliani looking to avoid another embarrassingly low result like in Iowa, just to give his "ignore the early states" plan some credibility
-Fred Thompson stays in the low single digits, as does Duncan Hunter
-No one drops out"
I at least managed to get the Republicans basically all right, although I thought Huckabee would do slightly better than 11%.
This result further muddles the waters of the races, and I don't think either party has a clear frontrunner at this point.
Sunday, January 6, 2008
Saturday, January 5, 2008
Thursday, January 3, 2008
Overall, I think I did decently.
I was right about Huckabee winning with Romney in 2nd, but the predicted razor-thin race failed to materialize, with Huckabee winning by a more comfortable 9%.
McCain ended up finishing in 4th, with 13%, just a little bit behind Thompson. I very slightly overestimated his support, but I'll say I was accurate enough on this one.
I was sorta wrong on this one, his supporters managed to get him the bronze medal, which should keep him relevant enough to still be a potential factor in New Hampshire.
Hunter only got 1%, so I got that right, but says he has no plans to drop out
Overall a very decent night for Ron Paul, getting 10% of the vote, well above Rudy, who only got 4% (I had him pegged slightly higher) but although he failed to pull off the real upset of finishing in 3rd, should give him momentum going into New Hampshire, where Republican voters have somewhat of a libertarian, anti-establishment streak, and could play serious spoiler by drawing votes from other camps.
-Obama wins by 4-5% over Clinton, who barely beats Edwards into 2nd
I was right about Obama winning, and my margin of victory wasn't too far off, but I was pretty surprised at Clinton finishing in third place, which is a major body blow to her campaign.
Richardson performed very poorly, with 2% of the vote. I got the 4th place right, but this is a big blow to a guy who deserves to poll better.
-Chris Dodd drops out
I was right about this one, as Dodd had his whole campaign in Iowa, even moving his family, but I didn't predict Biden, who I think was more running for Secretary of State. Interesting to see who they endorse, if anyone.