Displaying items by tag: Politics
Read this story from The National Post on the reversal of fortunes in federal politics resulting from the selection of Justin Trudeau as the new Liberal Party leader and an unprecedented rough patch for the Harper Conservatives. (May 24, 2013)
With the Conservatives ensnarled in the biggest political scandal in their seven years in government, a new poll suggests Justin Trudeau’s Liberals are en route to winning a massive majority in the next election.
More than four in 10 Canadians, 44%, said they would vote Liberal in the next federal election, according to latest Forum Poll for the National Post, compared to 27% support for the ruling Conservatives and 20% for the opposition NDP.
The Liberals would claim 192 seats in the 308-seat House of Commons with that support, leaving the Tories with 77 and dropping the NDP all the way back to 37.
The poll comes after Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s chief of staff, Nigel Wright, resigned when it was revealed he gave Senator Mike Duffy a $90,000 personal cheque to cover the senator’s housing expenses. The terms of the deal remain unknown, although the controversy does not appear to be dying as new documents show a Tory-dominated Senate committee whitewashed a report into Duffy’s expenses.
Harper has denied any knowledge of the deal and said he was “frustrated and sorry and angry” over what occurred.
But the repeated controversies within the senate — two Conservative senators, Duffy and Pamela Wallin, quit the caucus amid expense audits and a third, Sen. Patrick Brazeau, was booted out from caucus amid criminal charges — have hurt the prime minister, pollsters say.
“Mr. Harper’s very bad week has had a drastic effect on his approval and his party’s. It doesn’t help, when the Liberals are surging as they have been, to be stonewalling a controversy. Justin Trudeau needs only to listen to ['Art of war' author] Sun Tzu, and stay out of the way. Meanwhile, the NDP appear to have functionally ceded the role of the opposition to the Liberals in the public’s mind,” Forum Research President Lorne Bozinoff said in a statement.
Read more: http://news.nationalpost.com/2013/05/23/trudeaus-liberals-hit-historic-highs-as-senate-scandal-has-drastic-effect-on-tories-poll/
Are You a Multi-Issue Extremist? If you read this site regularly, and subscribe to the claims and advice of Rafe Mair, you probably are. Because the 81 year-old Mair is British Columbia's most well-known and well-loved Multi-Issue Extremist. The now long-established CSIS "Counter Terrorism Strategy" has defined individuals who express dissent toward any number of issues in this way. In particular, people who are committed to opposing unbridled oil and gas development, defined as "activist groups, indigenous groups, environmentalists and others who are publicly critical of government policy."
The federal government recently announced a reorganization of the National Research Council to make it more “business-led” and industry-focused. It appears we’re coming full circle to the early 1970s, when Sen. Maurice Lamontagne released “A Science Policy for Canada,” a report proposing Canadian science be directed to “mission-oriented” work rather than “curiosity driven” research. Since then, many politicians have encouraged support for science that serves market interests. I believe we should support science because curiosity and the ability to ask and answer questions are part of what makes our species unique and helps us find our way in the world.
Ok, John Horgan (BC NDP Energy critic), now I’m pissed off. You were quoted in the Vancouver Sun this week as saying you’re unhappy that the NDP lost, etc, weep, sob...What you did was let down British Columbians who couldn’t care less about political parties but looked to you to save us from the corporate bulldozer. In fact, the NDP abandoned the position that oppositions traditionally occupy in a democracy. "The duty", said Lord Randolph Churchill,"of the opposition is to oppose". You owe the people of British Columbia, of all political stripes, a huge apology for a gutless election where the government got a free ride.
Last week the Federal Court of Canada heard oral arguments from the Hupacasath First Nation and the Harper Government on Hupacasath’s legal action regarding the Canada-China Foreign Investment Promotion and Protection Agreement (FIPPA). In response to First Nations concerns of infringement on their inherent Aboriginal Title and Rights and lack of consultation the Hupacasath First Nation was compelled to launch a court challenge under Section 35 of the Canadian Constitution. The Government of Canada argued that there must be causal link between the ratification of FIPPA and the adverse effects on Hupacasath First Nation Title and Rights to proceed with consultation.
Read this story from The Toronto Star on Alberta Conservative MP Brent Rathgeber's stormy departure from caucus. (June 6, 2013)
OTTAWA—An Alberta MP has quit the Conservatives and launched a fierce broadside at the party and the prime minister’s office, declaring that the Tories had “morphed into what we once mocked.”
Brent Rathgeber (Edmonton-St. Albert) announced Wednesday night that he was resigning from the Conservative Party of Canada and will sit as an Independent MP.
Rathgeber says his decision was sparked by the government’s decision this week to gut his private member’s bill to force greater disclosure of salaries in the civil service.
But he also said his decision has been in the works for some time as he grew increasingly disillusioned with the direction of the party.
In a damning post on his blog, Rathgeber sets out his reasons for quitting the Tories.
“Recent allegations concerning expense scandals and the Government’s response has been extremely troubling.
“I joined the Reform/conservative movements because I thought we were somehow different, a band of Ottawa outsiders riding into town to clean the place up, promoting open government and accountability,” Rathgeber said.
“I barely recognize ourselves, and worse I fear that we have morphed into what we once mocked,” he wrote.
Rathgeber’s private member’s bill, discussed this week at a Commons committee, would have required disclosure of public sector salaries higher than $180,000. But the Conservative-dominated committee raised the threshold to more than $400,000.
“I have reluctantly come to the inescapable conclusion that the Government’s lack of support for my transparency bill is tantamount to a lack of support for transparency and open government generally,” Rathgeber said.
He called the committee hearings on the bill a “charade” and said the government gutted his bill without the support of a single witness.
Here are three things to remember about Premier Clark and the Enbridge pipeline: 1. She did not reject the pipeline - she simply said that Enbridge had not met BC's conditions; 2. She has, simply said “we want money”; 3. She hasn’t asked the main question – nor has anyone else including the media. That is, in spite of all the evidence to the contrary you can clean up a leak, assuming you can, how do you expect to get crews and heavy machinery into the Rocky Mountains, Rocky Mountain Trench, Coast Range or Great Bear Rainforest? For all the crap we’re going to hear in the next year or so, these questions will not be dealt with, simply because they can’t be.
As my friend wrote following the NDP's surprise election loss 3 weeks ago, for the next four years, there will be: NO public inquiry into the BC Rail and BC Hydro scandals; NO comprehensive public Environmental-Economic Impact Assessment for major resource development projects (pipelines, mines, fracking, etc.); NO restoration and repair to our damaged public health, emergency and education systems; NO restoration of a fairer dynamic tax code based on the ability to pay, not on who you know or how well you can blackmail.
I think most environmentalists are still in a state of shock over the Liberals' victory – or more correctly, the NDP loss...A battle has been lost, although considering Adrian Dix’s waffling on environmental matters generally, perhaps the NDP would have been no better than the Liberals. It’s up to First Nations and the rest of us to go to work to stop the destruction of what we love so dearly and we must be ready for civil disobedience. If we’re not prepared to do that, it’s like going into a poker game saying, "remember, I’m always bluffing."
BC Premier Christy Clark's decision today to oppose formally the Northern Gateway Pipeline, coupled with Prime Minister Stephen Harper's shift in focus to the Keystone XL project, means Enbridge's pipeline is all but dead. Yet the Clark Government's final submission to the Enbridge review panel pointedly leaves the door open to Kinder Morgan's proposal to triple its pipeline capacity to Vancouver. This makes no sense. The basis upon which Clark rejected Enbridge - the company's failure to meet five conditions established by the Liberal Government a year ago - applies equally to Kinder Morgan's plan. If the Enbridge pipeline isn't up to Christy Clark's standards, then the proposed Kinder Morgan expansion shouldn't be either.