Desperate Prime Ministers Office Party to a Criminal Act!

I cannot believe this! Harper is in full blown panic mode! I predict the total implosion of the CPC, with the

PMO's Reaction


scandal that just won’t quit.

Name this Conservative?

Name this Conservative?

The PMO (Prime Ministers Office) just released the full text of a secret recording of an NDP conference call. Here’s the kicker, the act of recording this conference call is a criminal offense that carries a maximum penalty of 5 years in prison under section 184 of the criminal code:

Here’s the actual transcript of the criminally recorded conference call from Macleans Kady O’Malley. There’s no doubt about the origin being the Prime Ministers Office, because Kady obligingly included the emailed media release.

What’s really nifty is that there wasn’t anything particularly damning said in the call. It simply reveals that the opposition has been talking about forming a coalition government since the election. Like duh! Everybody in Canada can do the math and the Conservatives came up with a minority. I’d say it was a scandal if the opposition HADN’T been talking over the arithmetic, and exploring common ground. The CPC will try to spin this as a dirty conspiracy to stage a parliamentary coup.

How come they didn’t figure that it’s not smart to publicise your association with scumbags? They are desperate and truly STUPID! At the very least it stinks like dirty tricks. At the worst, it is total contempt for the law. When you stack this on top of the bad taste left by last weeks dirty tricks, it’s going to be a really bad week for Stephen Harper :-(

Next steps? The NDP will, (or should), be asking the RCMP to investigate the PMO, and find the criminal who did this dirty deed. The media will jump on this, and with the exception of the National Post, and the CTV, they will roast the CRAP out of the PMO.

This is the right way to approach electoral finance issue

Green Party Issue Centred Site

Green Party Issue Centred Site

I did my daily news search on Green Party Canada, and picked up this coverage in the Western Standard. Now that’s the way to do it! It is true that the public per vote subsidy is currently critical to the Green Party of Canada. In the name of fiscal conservatism, and sustainable finances, the GPC operating budget is counting on the subsidy to retire the election debt, and balance the books ongoing. The issue is important though, and stands on it’s own merits. So How do you make the point, without seeming self-serving? Some of the rabid right will spin any support of publicly funded politics. Especially now that the Neo-Cons are frantic with fear, and going down in flames. It’s very hard, but this is how you do it.

Congrats Elizabeth, this is a home run.

And don’t forget, the Green Party WANTS YOU IN.

Parliamentary Democracy in Action.

It's not really like this

I just read a partisan Tory blog, with a difference. It didn’t rant at the undemocratic nature of the proposed coalition government, it addressed the potential weaknesses of the coalition. This is the kind of Tory that doesn’t eat babies, and should be wooed by the Green Party, as we did so well in 2004. I would enjoy debating these points with the author in a Pub, over a pint or two.

Here’s my non-partisan take on the current controversy:

We are governed by a Westminster Parliamentary Democracy. That means a Representative democracy, as any

He would agree

He would agree

true political conservative, like myself, or the members of the now defunct Progressive Conservatives, we seek to preserve our political traditions, because they are well establish by custom, law, and convention, and they work very well indeed.

I realise that in many respects this is contrary to official Green Party policy, especially with respect to proportional representation, but despite it’s imperfections, and blemishes, I am content to live under this ploitical system. In fact, this weeks events demonstrate that it IS robust, and it works well.
In order to form a government, a prospective Prime Minister must seek, and acquire the confidence of the house. Our current Prime Minister has a minority in the house, and an even weaker mandate from the country, with less than a third of the popular vote. There is no doubt that Stephen Harper sought to sow discord, and exercise power beyond the limits imposed by his parties minority position.

Hundreds of years of Parliamentary tradition support the Liberals and NDP in their intention to seek the confidence of the house, and form a coalition government. If the Bloc supports them, then it will be right and proper that they govern. If you seek to rule this country, and you pretend to be Conservative, then you are doubly bound by Parliamentary convention. There’s a pretty good discussion of this in todays Globe and Mail.
The Green Party has absolutely nothing to do with it, as they have no sitting members. The GPC will continue to build organisational strength, and continue to attract progressive conservatives, making it increasingly unlikely that the neo-conservatives will ever earn the confidence of the house. I am happy to say that Parliament is working, and that a Government that best represents the views of the majority of Canadian electors is about to take power. This is the my position, as a Green, and a Canadian.

Now don’t forget, the Green Party has room for many competing views of Canada. If you want to be part of a real political movement, that is sweeping away the cobwebs, JOIN THE GREENPARTY NOW!

How do our US Neighbours view the CPC Shenanigans?

As usual, I ran a media search of Green Party Canada, and out popped this New York Times article on our current controversy. It’s a relief to read a no BS analysis of the political consequences, and background to NYTimesthis issue. Americans have to live with the consequences of few holds barred political financing rules, political action committees, and generally the pervasive influence of money in politics. I don’t believe it is too extreme to characterise the interdependence of Lobbyists and elected officials in Washington as organised, legitimised political corruption. Americans recognise this, but they recognise that the system is so pervasive, and wrapped up in constitutional arguments that there is no escaping it for the forseeable future. I have discussed this with a number of US political ‘animals’ and they are almost universally enthusiastic about the possibilities of divorcing fundraising from the political process. What a breath of fresh air! Good policy unshackled from big donors!

CRAP Mouthpiece

CRAP Mouthpiece

When I read the National Post, and other CRAP mouthpieces characterising public political funding as political welfare, it really raises my ire. Public funding is just so unreservedly good for the political process, and their current attempt is such a crass, and opportunistic little piece of Sh*t. How can any serious journalist cover this debate like it was a sordid little squabble about a toy in a sandbox?

It’s time for a major Green Party membership drive.

Join the Party!

Join the Party!

It’s never a bad time for the Green Party to recruit new members, but recent events should really focus a spotlight on this requirement. The Green Party has been getting pretty good at raising money from the membership. Given the small membership numbers, to raise over $1mm from focussed appeals to the membership is pretty impressive. After all, the Liberals have more than 50 times the membership levels, and raise squat.

Jim Harris was always an exceptional fundraiser. But lets face it, he was a one man show, and was never able to teach his skills to the party bureaucrats. What Elizabeth’s team has done is to systematically make appeals that are generating results. It costs diddly, because it’s all online. Compare that to how much the Liberals, Conservatives, and Dippers spend in fundraising expenses, as a proportion of funds raised, and it’s pretty awesome.

Todays announcement that the CRAP Finance minister, Flaherty wants to eliminate the per vote subsidy should be a wakeup call. The GPC should not remain dependent upon this source of funds. Every public utterance by Green Party spokespersons should end with an appeal to join the Green Party. By building the membership base, both the fundraising, and organisational capacity of the Party will be enhanced. I watch the news clippings, and believe me, the Greens get enough earned media coverage to reach hundreds of thousands, even millions of Canadians every week. If only a paltry 2% of Green voters were to join the Party, and our fundraising efforts were comparably rewarded, then the $1.8mm in public funds would be more than matched.

Lot’s of people will scoff at this and say the green in the Green Party is all about cash, but the fact is that elections cost money. There are so many things that need to be done to get the message out, and with a stronger membership base, all other things will follow.

So here’s a link to join the GPC. Go on in and do your bit!

Pay per vote subsidy on the chopping block?

According to about a million leaks and articles like this Toronto Star article, Harper, Flaherty, and the boys

Politics as Usual

Politics as Usual

from the Reform, oops, Alliance, oops, CRAP, oops new and improved Conservative Party have decided to detonate a huge bomb tomorrow. They have been crowing over their plan to gerrymander the political financing laws, and eliminate the reforms to the electoral finance act introduced by the Liberals in time for the 2004 Federal Election.

The purpose of these reforms was to remove the influence of big donors from the political process. By limiting election spending, and limiting the amount, and types of donations the parties were allowed to recieve, the act intended to remove political decision making from lobbyists, and put it front and center to the electorate.

Because they have a well oiled fundraising machine, and know that they can raise limitless cash from their

Election for Sale?

Election for Sale?

admittedly motivated idealogical base, the Reform, oops CRAP will attempt to revoke the per vote subsidy to political parties. They will undoubtedly rail about political welfare, but their real agenda is to go back to the bad old days where rich donors determined election outcomes in Canada. Three guesses as to which Party the richest donors support?

Canadians will not be fooled by this utterly cynical ploy. On top of which, the Liberals, Bloc, and NDP will go absolutely ballistic over this. Ballistic enough to defeat the government, and form a Liberal-NDP coalition? I’m willing to bet that the Bloc will undertake to support such a coalition, and out of simple self preservation, such a coalition will be presented to the GG immediately after a defeat in the house.

Stay tuned, this is going to be really juicy!

Turncoat Greens a free ride for Old Line parties

I just checked out this article in the Montreal Gazette. It seems that the latest Party to try to scoop the

Scott 'turncoat' McKay on the left


growing Green Party vote is the Parti-Quebecois. Scott McKay, former leader of the Green Party in Quebec has been seduced by Pauline Marois to run in the riding of L’Assomption. It seems somehow incongruent for an Anglophone to be standing for the PQ, but what the hey? It’s a free country, (Provided of course you don’t count publically communicating in the language of your choice as freedom).

This is the latest, if perhaps the weirdest, in a string of ambitious Greens defecting to so called ‘electable’ parties in the quest of those juicy Parliamentary perks. Probably the most notorious was Tom Manley.

Tom 'turncoat' Manley


Seemingly minutes after failing in his 2005 Leadership bid for the Green Party of Canada,

Jim Harris

Jim Harris

where he was convincingly beaten by Jim Harris, he turned his colours and ran federally for the dreaded Liberals in Stormont Dundas and South Glengarry.

I suppose I could be accused of maligning these wundergreens, and some may claim that their intentons are lilly-green, with nary a hint of self interest, BUT… The fact that they are desirable targets for the bad guys is proof that the Green Party’s influence with the electorate is growing, and having an impact. Bailing before the job is done, in my books, labels them traitors, and totally fair game in the political arena.

If you know of a few more turncoat greens, please throw their names in the comments and I’ll make some calls, dig some dirt, and let the world know of their perfidy!

Green Party 2008 Election Results. Win or Loss?

Green Party win or loss?

Green Party win or loss?

I just picked up the validated results from the Elections Canada Website. I didn’t bother sorting out the judicial recounts etc. but the total Green Party vote was 937,643 ballots from a total of 13,719,113 ballots cast. That adds up to 6.83% of the vote.

I guess that looks like a win compared to the 2006 election, because the vote count went up from 664,068, and 4.5%. The GPC funding moves from about $1.3 million to around $1.8 million per annum, plus when the next election hits the GPC will get the same amount to fund the next election, as soon as the writ is dropped. Given the past financial straits of the party, (they were essentially broke when Elizabeth May took over), this shot in the arm, when married to the newfound fundraising prowess means they should be solvent. Solvency will depend on retiring their debts, and prudent budgetting, but lets just assume they’ll manage that OK?

The loss part is based upon the hard and pointy fact that expectations were raised to an unreasonable level. The public was repeatedly informed that the GPC would win seats. There was a whack of media attention, the debate participation, public statements by the leader, and spokespersons. There was no obvious plan to actually make seat wins happen though.

It was more than conceivable that seats could be won. Recruiting a few excellent candidates for potentially winnable ridings would have been a starting point. Follow that by pre-election organising in said potentially winnable ridings. Hire some real campaign managers, and communications people, lend staffers to the breakthrough targets, and ensure full funding and it might have come true. At least may have come close.

It was not to be. Now the political credibility of Elizabeth has been largely spent. The sense of fair play in the country will be inclined to say, ‘we gave them their chance, they got the debate spot they have been demanding, and they couldn’t even get their leader elected’.

On balance, the bad news outweighs the good. If the GPC cannot score a by-election win soon, then they will suffer big time in the 2009 – 2010 election. It pains me to say it, but the failure was in managing expectations. Promise seats + don’t deliver = you are a failure.

Elizabeth scores some slavish press

Have a look at this article.

Happy Smiling Elizabeth

Happy Smiling Elizabeth

I have known Elizabeth for a couple of years now, and I still get a kick out of how she garners such uncritical press. This is almost 100% selected quotes. Hey, I’m not knocking it, that’s why she was elected leader after all. There was one extremely significant quote though. “We haven’t had the best political machine to get us elected,” said May. May thinks the short campaign time of Stephen Harper’s “snap-election” and the financial crisis worked against the Greens.”

Elizabeth should have kissed and made up with David Chernushenko after the leadership

David Chernushenko, might have been, and may yet be...

David Chernushenko, might have been, and may yet be...

race. Had she reached out to the only people in the party who know how to organise, communicate, canvas, and get down and dirty in the electoral trenches, then she wouldn’t be relying strictly on the Media to make her campaign happen. The fact is, that she caught the competent people in the GPC by surprise with her candidacy. They had already coalesced around David before she came on the scene, and what would have been a Chernushenko coronation, became a May surprise. When she subsequently turned her back on Chernushenko, she lost what there was of a political machine.

As far as the short election, her people had 2 years to prepare. In 2006 we saw training, organising, campaign schools, lots of passionate people concentrating on the hard lesson learnt in 2004, and 2006-7. Now that Elizabeth has re-learned those lessons, I hope she’ll realise that the Air war needs to be married to the ground war when the writ is dropped.

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