Sunday, December 30, 2012

Ralph Goodale's Plaintive Plea

When I read it my gut reaction was "So?"

"It" was an e-mail from Ralph Goodale warning that the New Democrats are on the verge of a first, out fundraising the Liberals for an entire year.   The Libs apparently need $100,000 to close the gap on the NDP, assuming there are no particularly generous New Democrat supporters writing cheques between now and New Year's Eve.

The way the plea was written you might have imagined the Red Army was massed on the gates of Berlin.

I like Ralph Goodale.   I think he's a fine and honourable man and a first-rate Parliamentarian.   Maybe that's why the party hands him their begging bowl every time they want a whip round.

But I kept coming back to "so."   So, just why are the Libs trailing the NDP in fundraising?   So, why are the Libs trailing the NDP in the polls?  So, why are the Libs still comfortable on the Conservative-Lite perch?  So, just what does Canada lose from having the Liberal Party wallowing in the cellar?

If the Liberal Party is in political penury they need to ask themselves what they're doing wrong and what they need to do to make things right with the voting public.   The Libs need to explore their role in the collapse of public faith in Parliament.  Jesus Christ on a Crutch!   A majority of Canadians now feel the path to political action is to take to the streets.

The majority of respondents said they supported grassroots protests, including the Occupy movement and the British Columbia referendum against the harmonized sales tax. People are looking at other methods of political participation beyond conventional parties, said Environics pollster Keith Neuman, in an interview discussing the poll on Canadian values conducted jointly with the University of Alberta.

Also, when it comes to taxes, the poll suggests politicians are out of touch with Canadian values, adds U of A’s Harvey Krahn, a sociologist who assisted with the poll. It was conducted from Oct. 2 to 14 with a sample size of 2,001 people.

Keeping taxes as low as possible ranked last on the list of 12 shared values identified by Canadians, yet politicians, including Alberta Premier Alison Redford last week, staunchly rule out increasing taxes even when the province faces a serious deficit, said Krahn.

There’s a disconnect between Canadians’ values and politicians on this issue,” said Krahn.

Ah, Oh, Hmmm.   There's a disconnect between Canadians' values and those of their politicians.  Golly, gee whiz - there it is.  Maybe that's why you've gone from Sussex Drive to Stornoway to Motel Six out on the Gloucester highway.   That's because you, yes you, have created a disconnect between your political values and ours.  We've made it clear.   We would actually prefer to take to the streets than to follow you and, with the likes of Trudeau, Garneau and Hall-Findlay, you're not showing any sign of changing.

So, sorry Ralph.   You're such a nice guy but I have to give you a pass.   Maybe a little more time in sackcloth and ashes might be just the thing to save the Liberal Party of Canada.


Owen Gray said...

Unfortunately, after all this time, the Liberals haven't figured out why they are the third party, Mound.

Instead of asking for money, they should be asking Canadians, "Where did we go wrong?"

Anyong said...

Owen I have to ask you really think the Liberals or any party for that matter would be really, seriously interested in listening to what Canadians would have to say regarding their ..Liberals going wrong? Are Canadians really interested in anything remotely political at the moment. We can't even speak out in droves about Spence and her hunger strike. We are as dead as a door nail and the politicans are loving every minute of it.

Kirbycairo said...

I think the most important thing you said is that the Liberals are still comfortable on the Conservative-Lite perch. That is a central point and one that Liberals continue to ignore in droves. Look at the Chinese Tar-Sands deal - Justin Trudeau was wholly in favor of it and was unable to articulate any meaningful criticism of the Harpercons. The Liberal Party simply refuses to turn the page on its neo-liberal policies and as a result they are failing to capture any significant support.

The Mound of Sound said...

Owen, it's as though they don't have any inclination to connect with ordinary Canadians. They're looking for a new Messiah (to replace the last failed prophet) to lead Canadians back into the Liberal fold.

Anyong, I agree that the political parties have little interest for public opinion or, for that matter, for the public welfare. That's not how petro-states function. As for public apathy, I think you're misreading that.

Public discontent is building as that poll revealed. That's a gradual, smouldering process but it leads to powerful outcomes.

This demonstrated disconnect between the people and those who govern them is always a precursor to upheaval, even revolution. There is absolutely no reason that Canada's body politic should be immune to such a universal reality.

What most concerns me, as noted recently by Chris Hedges at, is that this type of discontent can quickly turn disorderly and uncontrollable, creating the sort of power vacuum into which tyrannical movements can insinuate themselves.

I made this very point in arguing that Washington needed to send Egyptian forces into Libya to oust Gadaffi and create the stability necessary for a quick but stable transition to democracy. Of course that didn't happen paving the way for the establishment of radical Islamism in Libya and, subsequently, Egypt as well as more recently, Syria.

Chaos always plays into the hands of extremists. The French learned this with "The Terror." The Russians saw Mensheviks gunned down by the Bolsheviks.

The Mound of Sound said...

@ KC. The Libs have long discounted the vital role progressivism plays in their fortunes. Today it's as though they've never heard of the term.

I think the Libs and NDP are directly responsible for Harper's political successes. Layton certainly aided and abetted Harper's ascendancy by his own focus on ousting the Libs from second place. Ignatieff, undoubtedly tinged by his American experience, thought the Liberals should draw alongside the Tories.

Now Canadians look at this miserable bunch and have trouble distinguishing them. It's as though "why bother?" When the majority of the public disengages from politics and sees street protests and disobedience as the most appropriate outlet for their discontent and the most effective vehicle for achieving political change, our democracy has descended to a terrible state.

Wait until Harper and Redford, with Liberal and NDP backing, move to drive the Northern Gateway through to Kitimat. Street protests will be the least of their worries.

Anonymous said...
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the salamander said...

mmm .. You've nailed the tragic comedy of current Canadian politics looking after the 1% .. and hinted at the ongoing, secretive complicity of provincial Harper Northern Alliance Conservative franchise operators.. whether Ms Redford or Ms Clark ..

The pundits are barking. Its Harper as the likely 'winner' in 2015 sez Kinsella among others. (I see Harper as a complete 'loser' and cheater myself .. when that qualifies as being a 'winner' I'll shut up forevermore) The votes will split - with voters apathetic - partisan polls trampling the issues - saviors in short supply - and at least two more shocking full of pus omnibus bills to pummel the country and its citizens into a dazed, bleary, electorate stupefied... poisoned and strangled by its own 2011 elected majority government. All defended or appealed in the highest courts by retained law firms at 500 to 1000 per hour for years of ongoing litigation, defamation, defecation, deflection.

Stand by in 2015 for further, clever, arcane, devious - malicious - anonymous electoral fraud, vote suppression and Tea Party style dirty, filthy unethical tricks .. plus a perfect deflection and alibi and dissembling government paid defense via Arthur Hamilton and damage control robo talking points by troll-bots like Van Loan, DeLorey, Poilievre et al.


So.. with the above in mind.. let's look ahead.. to 2019 or so. Yes.. endless unconstitutional omnibus barrage bombing 'budgets' disabling-denying artifices aimed at eliminating opposition or common sense defense against anything Stephen Harper wants to do to Canada, donate to China or swear is owed to Israel to battle the damned Muslims.

Argument ? This won't happen ?

Get a grip. And let's look at the vicious agenda and attacks on our environment, First Nations Treaties, Parliament and the House of Commons and our democracy .. as soon as Stephen Harper arranged his majority via prorogation.

Now imagine how he will further entrench through 2015, then sail on unimpeded, ever more disastrously.. controlling and deceiving a nation as he leaves it in ethical and honorable tatters, aided by that great but harsh twit John Baird.


The primary question right now .. unless I'm mistaken, is .. can Canada survive seven or eight more years of deceit, incompetence, environmental destruction, military adventurism, foreign resources - labor takeovers and demolition of democracy via secrecy, obstruction of justice.. and pathological lying from its chief public servant and his chosen whipped, morally bankrupt n zombie few?


That a single challenging aboriginal woman in a teepee can accomplish more in 20 or so days without solid food than all the jowly opposition MP's and the overfed mainstream media .. is pathetic evidence of how self concerned, posturing and weak assed losers & whiners the political baggage train establishment has become.

Are you a Canadian .. or a Harper Party - Conservative Northern Alliance drone ? I do not accept that you can be both

I ask anyone concerned again ..
Do you stand for Canada..? Or the twisted actions of Stephen Harper.. ? You need to choose one or the other .. be one those defending the rain forest and the western coastline.. or lining up with Joe Oliver, Peter Kent, John Baird, Joe Flaherty to destroy it.

The Mound of Sound said...

Hi, Sal. Well put. Maybe Kinsella is right. If so, Harper succeeds again by default of the opposition.

On a brighter note, a terrific New Year to you.