Friday, April 28, 2006

Can Anyone Help Me On This?

Does anyone know who the Desmarais and Stronach families are supporting in the leadership race?

(Paul Desmarais, left; Frank Stronach, right)

Thursday, April 27, 2006

This Is What I Have A Problem With

By no means am I supporting Bob Rae in his pursuit for the Liberal leadership, but having said that, I'm not discounting the fact that he's likely a really nice guy and indeed quite an intelligent fellow. What I have a problem with, though, are Liberals who viciously attacked David Emerson for his defection, claiming blind ambition BUT are willing to support Rae.

Rae has been one of the most prominent NDP figureheads at both the national and provincial levels. He first became an NDP member in 1974 and was then elected to Parliament in 1978 to serve as opposition OPPOSITION FINANCE CRITIC (read: by the time he was Premier, he should have known what the hell he was doing).

In 1982, Rae beat out Richard Johnston and Jim Foulds in the Ontario provincial NDP leadership race. In 1990, Rae became Premier. I won't digress onto his lousy record as Premier, but if you are interested, you can click here. In 1996, Rae resigned as Party leader after his Party lost the 1995 election.

So the purpose of quickly recanting Rae's political history, is to highlight the fact that Rae was a Dipper for nearly 20 years - and not just any Dipper, but an elected Dipper at both the federal and provincial levels and with a high profile.

Now he wants to be aLiberal? Fine. I don't care. Truly, I don't. But let's not forget why he's becoming a Liberal - so that he can become leader.

The National Post quoted him on the front page of their April 25th, 2006 paper as saying back when, "there is a smugness and complacency about the Liberal Party of Canada which has not really changed since my first encounter". Now, this is what he has to say: "The Liberal Party, for me, best expresses the progressive, pragmatic, practical spirit that Canadians want to see in their government."

Okay, fair enough - I agree with the latter, but then why wait until April of this year to take out a membership? Why? Because he wants to enter the leadership race.

I can understand that - hell, if he thinks he's the guy to run the Libs, then great, but what I take issue with are the Liberal Party members who aggressively campaigned against Emerson's defection; who called Emerson a political opportunist; and who stated that the reason why Stronach and Brison's defection was different from Emerson's was because it was not based on ambition.

So to all those who fall under that category, I direct my venom to you. It is all those types of individuals that embarass me and make me feel obligated to defend to tothers that not all us Liberals are hypocrites.

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

And It's Finished...

I posted yesterday on what was rumoured to be a possible settlement to the softwood dispute. Well, today CTV confirmed that Canada and the U.S. have agreed to a framework deal to end the decades old softwood lumber dispute.

Tuesday, April 25, 2006

This Is Why I Supported Emerson In His Defection

Vancouver is buzzing with the latest news that a softwood lumber agreement may have almost been reached after leaked information (Way to go Tories! Must be all those inexperienced staffers) to the media. So after years of taking it in the ass, Canadian softwood lumber companies might finally be seeing an end to this and this is why I supported Emerson in his defection.

Don't get me wrong, I am a Liberal, but as my bio mentions on my blog, I am a pragmatic at heart and my allegiance is to good public policy rather than ardent partisanship. I like Emerson, and though I might be in the minority, I think he is doing good for Canada as a overall. Yes it sucks that a riding which elected a Liberal would end up with a Conservative two weeks later; yes it sucks that our Party lost a major player; and yes it sucks that now the Tories will get credit for an agreement if it is reached, BUT, at the end of the day, if a settlement is reached, a settlement is reached and that's good news for Canadians everywhere.

There are many issues at hand here and I will avoid talking about them or else my blog will be uber long, but I must digress on one thing - butting heads with Americans will not do us any good.

People blamed Harper for being too cushy with Bush. On the other hand, we had Martin in the 2006 Federal Campaign criticize the Yanks to bolster himself in the polls. I've worked for some time in politics as a staffer and I know first hand that if you get along with the person you are dealing with, a solution is much easier to come by. I'm not saying that Martin should have kissed Bush's ass, but to a certain extent, you need to cozy-up to get what you want. Haven't all of us done this with bosses, profs, etc at one point or another? Same logic applies here.

But back to what I was getting at - I'm glad to see that Emerson is in that Tory Cabinet because God only knows how inexperienced they are. If a settlement is reached soon, that would send billions of dollars back to Canada, it would mean more jobs and stronger economies for regions that depend on softwood lumber.

Being from BC, I am excited to see what happens. The lumber dispute is one that negatively effects millions of people despite their political affiliations and we should welcome a solution (given it's a good one) regardless of partisanship. This is a Canadian issue and should not be seen as a partisan issue.

Candidates, Potential Candidates And Their Supporters

Last Friday: Joe Volpe; two days ago: Scott Brison; yesterday: Carolyn Bennett and Bob "Way-to-Screw-Ontario" Rae; Friday: Ken Dryden.

So with all these potential leaders coming out, one thing is for sure - we definitely have a buffet to choose from. And I'm glad. With so many directions for organizers and key players to be pulled in, I just hope that this doesn't turn ugly. For those of you interested to know who is running and who are their main supporters, you can thanks TDH Strategies that posted a list. Here is the content:

Former Minister of State (Public Health) and current Liberal MP Carolyn Bennett
(who, fyi, has a great website)
- Ontario Attorney General Michael Bryant
- Ontario MPP Mary Anne Chambers
- Beth Webster

Former Secretary of State (Science, Research and Development & International Financial Institutions) and current Liberal MP Maurizio Bevilacqua
- Liberal MP Roy Cullen
- Tenio Evangelista
- Michael Marzonlini

Former Minister of Public Works and Government Services and current Liberal MP Scott Brison
- Liberal Senator Jim Cowan
- Richard Diamond
- Liberal MP Mark Eyking
- John Bethel
- Marlene Floyd
- Leigh Lampert
- Emmanuel Morin
- Susan Murray
- Dale Palmater
- Gray Picco
- Jonathan Schneiderman
- Leslie Swartman

Former Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, President of the Queen's Privy Council, Minister of the Environment and current Liberal MP Stéphane Dion
- Don Boudria
- Jamie Carroll
- Jim Goetz
- Liberal MP Marlene Jennings
- Brian Klunder
- André Lamarre
- Mark Marissen
- Byron Wilfert

Former Minister of Social Development and hockey hero and current Liberal MP Ken Dryden
- Sharon Carstairs
- Mark Watton

Martha Hall-Findlay
- Quito Maggi

Liberal MP Michael Ignatieff
(Gawd am I in love with this guy!)
- Tom Allison
- Alfred Apps
- Sylvain Beaudrey
- Dan Brock
- Aileen Carroll
- Liberal MP Rodger Cuzner
- Ian Davey
- Robert Fragasso
- Marc-André Gendron
- Kyle Harrietha
- David Hurford
- Marc Lalonde
- Paul Lalonde
- Liberal MP Derek Lee
- David Peterson
- Liberal MP Jim Peterson
- Mario Poirier
- Liberal MP Pablo Rodriguez
- Liberal Senator David Smith
- Liberal MP Rober Thibault

Ontario MPP Gerard Kennedy
- Liberal MP Omar Alghabra
- Liberal MP Naveed Bains
- Social activist June Callwood
- Liberal MP Mark Holland
- David McNaughton
- Liberal Senator Terry Mercer
- Liberal MP Mario Silva
- Liberal MP Scott Simms
- Liberal MP Borys Wrzesnewskyj

Former NDP Ontario Premier Bob Rae
(Website is under construction - thanks Zac and Mississaugapeter)
- Raj Chahal
- Martin Cuchon (rumour has it)
- Former PC Ontario Premier Bill Davis (well, he went to his announcement)
- Paul Genest
- Eddie Goldenberg
- Liberal Senator Marc Harb
- Randy Pettipas
- Liberal Senator Jim Munson
- John Rae
- Liberal MPP George Smitherman
- Liberal MPP Greg Sorbara

Former Minister of Human Resources and Skills Development and Immigration Minister and current Liberal MP Joe Volpe
- Liberal MP Joe Comuzzi
- Liberal MP Sukh Dhaliwal
- Liberal MP Jim Karygiannis
- Liberal MP Wajid Khan
- Ted Lojko
- Liberal MP Gurbax Malhi
- Massimo Pacetti
- Ian Perkins
- Liberal MP Yasmin Ratansi
- Robin Russell
- Liberal MP Lui Temelkovski