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There are some quality candidates…

… vying for Liberal Party nominations.

My political junkiness kicks into high gear usually about 12-18 months ahead of a projected election date. I love elections. And I love the processes and machinations leading up to them.

Although it has been an unbelievable (literally and figuratively… which you’ll understand if you know me personally) summer, I have been following some of the LPC nominations that are shaping up. There are some interesting and quality candidates stepping up to the plate in many parts of the country, but two of them really caught my eye. One of them is in Kanata-Carleton, where Karen McCrimmon is standing for the nomination and the other is in southwestern Ontario in Brantford-Brant, where Danielle Takac is throwing her hat into the ring.

Kanata-Carleton is one of the ridings that has been re-jigged for the next election and it is almost in my backyard! One of the many CPC trained seals, Gordon O’Connor, is the current MP of the riding of Carleton-Mississippi Mills. I am unsure as to whether he has announced if he will run again, but he’ll have a helluva fight on his hands if Karen McCrimmon gets the nomination!

Ms. McCrimmon is a decorated ex-military officer who is engaged in and connected with the real issues that her riding and the country are facing. According to her website, “she is pushing the issue of youth unemployment, and improved benefits for Canadian war veterans.” The way the Harperites have pushed both vets and the youth to the back-burner has long been a sore point with me and this stance will serve her well in a riding that is home to many military and ex-military personnel.

One of the comments she recently made on her Facebook page says a lot about how the Harper government has conducted itself and how the Liberals will not follow suit:

This government is all about keeping up ‘appearances’ or ‘perceptions’. Now is the time for us to inject a little reality into the discussion because it will take a better part of a year to break through their carefully crafted propaganda…

She, of course, is dead on! And Ms. McCrimmon and the other Liberals that will be elected as the government next year will focus on real issues and not bumper-sticker politics.

This riding can be a LPC win in the next election – especially if someone as qualified and energetic as Ms. McCrimmon is nominated! Go get ’em!!

The next nomination that I’d like to highlight is flying her flag in a riding far from my backyard, but one that again I think winnable for the Liberals if the right person is in place.

Brantford-Brant is in southwestern Ontario and is currently held by yet another CPC minion, Phil McColeman, whose main claim to fame seems to be that he organises a local hockey tourney every year. Yeah, good for him.

Danielle Takacs is a woman who can colour this riding Liberal red. Looking into her background I was struck by the degree of engagement and committment that she has shown at the local level and in the Liberal party. The “experience” tab on her webpage is extensive and broad. She has obviously built a lot of bridges through her work and these will serve her well to win the nomination and the riding after that.

AND, she used to pen a very well-written blog that I used to follow! Look out folks, we bloggers are a-takin’ over the joint!

Some of the issues that she notes as being important to her include:

  • Upholding and Honouring Veteran’s rights
  • Addressing the Youth Unemployment Crisis
  • Promoting Canada as a friend to international development, and regain its once highly regarded international reputation.

Like Ms. Takacs and Ms. McCrimmon, these are important issues for me as as well, and I suspect for most Canadians.

I wish both of these fine leaders the best of luck in their nominations and beyond!



If you were the Ontario NDP…

… would YOU force an election with numbers like these?


No. I didn’t think so.

The great thing is that Timmy is gonna be soooooo pissed!!!


Yeah, yeah…

… I KNOW that the only poll that matters is the one held on E Day, but for Libs like me, this is encouraging:

The latest Nanos tracking numbers reveal that national support for the Liberal Party is at 35.4%, just ahead of the Conservatives at 31.3%. Liberal support has been slowly increasing since the last federal election, but has not seen similar numbers since 2009. Ballot support for the NDP is currently at 23.6%, while the Bloc and the Greens have 4.8% and 4.2%, respectively.

And it must be a little worrying for those 25 year old staffers at the PMO… watch for the ReformCon attack machine to rev it up a notch against JT.

Any bets that this little dance will somehow be twisted into a negative ad?



“Justin Trudeau. Dancing with hot wife while thinking of ways to waste your tax dollars.”

Well, I prefer that to Mr. Roboto:


“Have a good day young Mr. Harper.”


So. My conservative friends…

… ex PC PM Brian Mulroney…

I guess he was a real asshole, eh? A lefty pig?

Never agreed with everything BM the PM said or did, but I do respect the guy… especially in the context of the über partisan Harperites.

So how about it, Cons? Are ya gonna demonise one of Canada’s better PM’s? one of your own?

So hypocritical. So crass. So ugly. So CPC.


Liberal leadership race – Joyce Murray for PM

As much as I’d like to believe that Joyce Murray can pull off an upset and win the LPC leadership, I cannot realistically expect this to happen. Trudeau has the momentum, the money and the supporters. And the hair.


Joyce has the policy knowledge. She knows the files. We don’t know if JT knows the files. J’en doute.

She has the guts to stand up to the hyper partisan portion of the party to say : let’s put our differences with the NDP aside for one election and cooperate in order to defeat the Cons. Then we reform the electoral system with something that will more accurately represent the intentions on Canadians.

She recognizes that splitting the centre / left of centre vote election after election will only assure a CPC government… Election after election.

She also sees the value of environmental sustainability and policies aimed to ensure that biodiversity, our water supplies and our food supplies are protected.

She also knows that Canada’s place on the international stage has been severely tarnished by the Harperites, and she will work to put us back in a place where we are once again respected.

And she also knows that the war on marijuana is one that should have never been waged and the time has come to legalize its use and remove the criminal element from this industry.

I Just voted for Joyce Murray, the best candidate to represent the interests of Canadian progressives and the LPC!

And I hope my vote helps to elect her.


Friday miscellany…

... unapologetically-a-fan-of-my-MP edition…

I am getting more than a little pissed off about the treatment that my MP, David McGuinty, is getting these days just because he lost his composure for an instant and blurted something that, albeit correct, he probably should have put in a better way.

Here are the facts:

  • He more or less said that Alberta MPs should spend less time cow-towing to the oil and gas industry and see the bigger picture – i.e., the provinces and territories of Canada that don’t begin with an “A” and end with an “a”.
    He was correct in this assessment. Alberta pols get a lot of mileage from slamming us in the East. Who can forget the “Let the eastern bastards freeze in the dark“? I sure as hell don’t!  And do these pols put on blinders and blindly follow whatever is “best” for the tar sands, OF COURSE THEY DO!!! How on earth can this be disputed is beyond me!
  • Hands-up to anyone who has NEVER said something that they would have liked to have taken back.Nobody?

    Yeah, that’s what I thought.

  • Did he “man-up” and apologise? Yes. Unequivocally.And when did we last see a CPC MP apologise for anything? And they have LOTS to say sorry for!


    That’s what I thought.

So lay off the guy. He is a great MP, does loads for his constituency and is a great guy to boot.


Carrying along the same theme, man, some Albertans just love to whine, eh? I know that they are not all like that – I have some great friends who are Albertan born and bred. But this whole horse at the Royal York and Rogers Centre thing is over the top.

The Royal York is a private establishment that was under no obligation to let a flea carry varmint into its lobby. NONE! Would YOU, as an owner of a biz like the RY want a horse in it? Of course not! The hotel did eventually relent to the loud mouthed yokels standing outside the hotel demanding that the nag be let in, but I sure as hell would have stuck to my guns (which I’m sure a few of the Calgarians were totin’!).

And the Rogers Centre will indeed let the mammal named Deep Six (or something) in as well. I just hope that the beast doesn’t get spooked by being in a REAL stadium and not that barn they call McMahon Stadium.

Bold prediction – Argos 31 and the Stumps 10!



Sigh. Black Friday. Whatta fine example of hyper-consumerism. And now it’s here in Canada. Isn’t it enough that store are putting up gaudy xmas decorations and playing that infernal music as early as August?? Do we really need another reason to shop?

I can’t believe how many of we Canucks head to US border towns to pick up goods that may be a few bucks cheaper! Sure, a lot of goods are more costly here but don’t give me that “I’m getting ripped off by Canadian retailers crap. Most of our retail outlets are American-owned or controlled anyways and they set the prices. Plus, taxes are higher here. Those higher taxes go to pay for things like, um, free health care!

For me, today is a “buy nothing” day.


Finally, the weather has been awesome in my corner of the world, but that looks to end soon. Oh well, climate change is making and will continue to make Ottawa winters that much warmer…


But is there substance?

Cuz Justin The T sure as hell has the sizzle.

His speech yesterday was what many of we progressives were waiting for. It was honest, open and positive. I really cannot picture The Robot or Mr. Angry saying those words because absent were the vindictive hateful diatribe.  Can you even picture either of those guys giving a speech of that length (or any length) without dissing the other parties and their leaders???

No way.

Good speech. Safe speech. I liked the positivity.

The best thing about JT entering the fray is that people will start to talk about the Liberals again – and in a good way. It’s already happening.

Now, do I support him? I would like to but am reserving judgement. Dude has the sizzle but does he have the substance? I can’t wait to see his first hour-long interview with a top-notch journo who will ask him about fiscal policy, monetary policy, international relations, etc. I will, of course, vote for him. But my level of engagement (e.g., whether I donate, volunteer, etc.) will depend largely on how he defines himself in terms of substance.


Friday miscellany…

So the Grits will name their new leader next April. Let the games begin!

The smart money is on JT, but I hear there is an experienced fellow from Sherbrooke who is looking for work…


Sinkholes: one of the results of ignoring municipal infrastructure deficits and obsessing with property tax cuts.

Expect more sinkholes, more water main ruptures and more incidents of storm water overflow at waste water treatment plants. In fact, bank on it.

In the meantime, follow the sinkhole on Twitter! It’s a laugh a minute! @174Sinkhole:


Oratorical skills is one area where modern Canadian pols cannot match their American counterparts. Name a contemporary Canadian politician that comes close to Clinton and Obama (either of them). These are speakers for whom I have immeasurable respect when they are on stage practicing their art. I have been speaking in front of audiences since I was 11 years old, so I can say with some experience that their skills are unparalleled and require years to master.

Too bad that modern political parties put more emphasis on blurting a sound-bite rather than expressing a cogent argument.



What Stephen Harper said:

“Stephen Harper will cease patronage appointments to the Senate. Only candidates elected by the people will be named to the Upper House.” (Stephen Harper Leadership Website, January 15, 2004)

“… the Upper House remains a dumping ground for the favoured cronies of the Prime Minister.” (Stephen Harper Leadership Website, January 15, 2004)

“I don’t plan to appoint senators; that’s not my intention.”
(Stephen Harper, Cornwall Standard-Freeholder, January 14, 2006)

What he did:

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has appointed five new senators, bolstering the Tory majority in the upper chamber.

He is sending Diane Bellemare, Tobias C. Enverga Jr., Thanh Hai Ngo, Thomas Johnson McInnis and Paul E. McIntyre to the Senate.


I wonder if the good folks in K-W appreciate being told that their votes were “bought” by organized labour?

Probably not.

Progressive Conservative Leader Tim Hudak is blaming what he calls “an ominous display of union muscle” for losing the Kitchener-Waterloo seat his party has held for 22 years.

The Tories lost both by-elections as the Liberals held Vaughan and the New Democrats made an historic breakthrough in Kitchener-Waterloo, winning the riding for the first time ever.

Mr. Hudak says the NDP bused in public sector union “troops” from across the province to help them take the riding from the Conservatives, and claims the unions “bought” the by-election.He predicts there will be “an arms race” between the Liberals and NDP to see who can get closest to the public sector union bosses.

Timmy strikes again!

I kinda hope, though, that the OPC keeps this doofus on as their leader. He is the biggest asset the Ontario Libs and Dippers have these days!


Justin Trudeau…

… will he or won’t he?

I haven’t a clue and don’t pretend otherwise.

But Warren Kinsella does have some insights and recently (as in “today”) outlined 10 Reasons why JT is a Good Choice.

All valid points and, quite frankly, this from-the-sidelines blogger-dude cannot come up with 10 Reasons why JT isn’t a Good Thing.

But I can come up with a few.

  1. He would be as welcome in Saskatchewan and Alberta as a locust at harvest time. Or Greenpeace at any pub in Fort Mac. Or PETA at the Stampede. Or… etc.
  2. The Liberals would once again be running a coronation and not a leadership contest. fresh ideas seldom come out of coronations.
  3. Other less prominent but equally or better qualified than Mr. Trudeau may be discouraged from running. Why? See Number 2 above. Liberals like David McGuinty, David Bertschi, Dominc Leblanc, Marc Garneau or even someone like Sheila Fraser are all legit, have good ideas and are fresh.
  4. I’m not sure of JT’s sellability in his home province. But I could be wrong.
  5. Some progressive people – and I know quite a few – think he’s a poser and is riding his Dad’s name… name-cred but not enough street cred.

OK. Only five reasons. Best I can do.


One progressive party under one banner?

“Nope,” I said. “They’re too goddamn stupid.”

That’s what Warren Kinsella told Bobby Kennedy Jr. when asked if the NDP and Liberals could ever be persuaded to work together.

And he was right.

As long as the progressive vote is split between the two parties in this fine country, Harpo hasn’t a worry in the world! He has his 25-30 point base and can cobble together enough from the fringes to win majority after majority. The 25-30 percent don’t care about robocalls, prorogation, and the politics of fear. They love the Robot leader and nuthin’ gonna change that, boy!

And, unless smart leaders – those who can do basic math, that is – like Nathan Cullen or perhaps Justin Trudeau are elected as leaders, we’ll see Harper blue for some time to come. So, unless the improbable happens and Cullen is elected the new Dipper boss tomorrow, who leads Layton’s party is irrelevant.


I’m a Liberal, but not an “engaged” one… I’m the kind that frustrates riding organisations to no end. I pay my membership fee and vote for the local candidate. But I don’t donate to the party, nor do I volunteer at election time. Show me that you can do Grade 3 math and I’ll be there. With a smile and my chequebook.

And you’ll have lots of blue team progressives coming into the tent too. The old school PCs don’t have a home. Give them one.

Is anyone listening?