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I am going to vote Liberal today


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WARNING THIS IS LONG AND RAMBLING - I mentioned in another post that I had dinner with good friends tonight. We met through the childrens aid society as we are both foster parents and we adopted the youngest of four. They adopted the two middle boys and unfortunately because of case circumstances the oldest daughter can't be adopted and is stuck in a group home. I was amazed to learn late into the evening having drinks that he used to work for the progressive conservatives of old, both under Mulroney and Clark so of coarse the conversation got steered into the election at which point both wifes huffed and went out to the deck. First of all this man is immensely intelligent. A clinical psychologist who started out in the military and now has his own practice. We were talking of platforms and he finally asked me what I thought of Harper himself. I said I didnt like him but I have always been a fiscal conservative and such other than Kim Campbell I have always voted that way. We started talking about the rumours about the behind the scene things going on when he pointed out that all the people he worked with back in his political days are voting for other parties other than one who is only voting cons because he likes the candidate. He talked about the reputation Harper has behind the scenes of being ruthless and not willing to negotiate or accept any dissagreement from party members. I of coarse have always chalked it up to the normal rumours spread from opposing sides but he pointed out that the people he had heard it from are party insiders. I am not going to name the names he named because it will just sound like I am bulls$$ting you. I was sitting on my roof tonight having a beer after spending 14 hours reroofing it. The only reason I mention this is I was exhausted but extremely relaxed, enjoying the breeze and the peace and quiet and I started thinking about something. My grandfather used to always say that the people you keep around you say a great deal about who you are. Who does Harper keep around him. Who has he allowed to have a voice and to speak out in the public somewhat, and I realized it was the two guys in the party I can stand the least, Baird and Poilievre. These are his right and left hand man. In all honesty I have slowly been adjusting my thinking lately and I have to say today that on monday I will vote Liberal for the first time. I truly hope that Harper fails to get a majority here while at the same time not giving power to Layton. The conservative party needs a drastic shakeup. The one thing I have agreed with that Layton has said is parliament is broken. We need to get rid of the bloc, reboot the blue and somehow in all of this not get a left wingnut into power that will spend us into oblivion. Sorry for the rambling post but I had a cathartic moment I wanted to share.

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Actually a good analysis, and I mostly agree. But despite all of Harper's faults, I still think Layton's platform, and Iggy are worse. So I am going to hold my nose and vote conservative.

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WARNING THIS IS LONG AND RAMBLING - I mentioned in another post that I had dinner with good friends tonight. We met through the childrens aid society as we are both foster parents and we adopted the youngest of four. They adopted the two middle boys and unfortunately because of case circumstances the oldest daughter can't be adopted and is stuck in a group home. I was amazed to learn late into the evening having drinks that he used to work for the progressive conservatives of old, both under Mulroney and Clark so of coarse the conversation got steered into the election at which point both wifes huffed and went out to the deck. First of all this man is immensely intelligent. A clinical psychologist who started out in the military and now has his own practice. We were talking of platforms and he finally asked me what I thought of Harper himself. I said I didnt like him but I have always been a fiscal conservative and such other than Kim Campbell I have always voted that way. We started talking about the rumours about the behind the scene things going on when he pointed out that all the people he worked with back in his political days are voting for other parties other than one who is only voting cons because he likes the candidate. He talked about the reputation Harper has behind the scenes of being ruthless and not willing to negotiate or accept any dissagreement from party members. I of coarse have always chalked it up to the normal rumours spread from opposing sides but he pointed out that the people he had heard it from are party insiders. I am not going to name the names he named because it will just sound like I am bulls$$ting you. I was sitting on my roof tonight having a beer after spending 14 hours reroofing it. The only reason I mention this is I was exhausted but extremely relaxed, enjoying the breeze and the peace and quiet and I started thinking about something. My grandfather used to always say that the people you keep around you say a great deal about who you are. Who does Harper keep around him. Who has he allowed to have a voice and to speak out in the public somewhat, and I realized it was the two guys in the party I can stand the least, Baird and Poilievre. These are his right and left hand man. In all honesty I have slowly been adjusting my thinking lately and I have to say today that on monday I will vote Liberal for the first time. I truly hope that Harper fails to get a majority here while at the same time not giving power to Layton. The conservative party needs a drastic shakeup. The one thing I have agreed with that Layton has said is parliament is broken. We need to get rid of the bloc, reboot the blue and somehow in all of this not get a left wingnut into power that will spend us into oblivion. Sorry for the rambling post but I had a cathartic moment I wanted to share.

Good story. I heard the same kind of things about Jean Chretien. I guess it all depends on who you talk to and who THEY know.

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Actually a good analysis, and I mostly agree. But despite all of Harper's faults, I still think Layton's platform, and Iggy are worse. So I am going to hold my nose and vote conservative.

I totally understand as that is what I have been doing but at the same time will the party ever truly change or recover some of what it was 20 years ago if we keep supporting it? I would even like to see the Liberal party back to what it was to be honest. I really dont like the way politics have turned out since Harper took power. Part of the problem I think was that the reform capitalized on the weakness of the conservative party which led us being sold out by Peter Mckay. The Liberal party has never really recovered from the Chretien era. What we are left with now is a plethora of mediocre to down right distastefull politicians. All the greats that I truly admired are gone sitting behind the scenes shaking there heads at the state of parliament.

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Good story. I heard the same kind of things about Jean Chretien. I guess it all depends on who you talk to and who THEY know.

Actually I asked him about Chretien, he said he didnt know him but rumour was he was an ego maniac which fits pretty well with what we saw. The question is though who in there right mind would want to be prime minister who isnt an ego maniac. Think of the crap they endure and the hours they work.

Edited by Ottawavalleyboy
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Its all about the money all of the time. Reform had good cost fiscal ideas, and right now harper has the best economic platform. I don't care how he treats the gnomes in the cpc party, just deliver on the economy. If it starts to suck, vote him out or stay home. And during harper's tenure he has done a good job running the economy. He can be the biggest jerk to his party. Its not like he's all of a sudden a dictator.

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Its all about the money all of the time. Reform had good cost fiscal ideas, and right now harper has the best economic platform. I don't care how he treats the gnomes in the cpc party, just deliver on the economy. If it starts to suck, vote him out or stay home. And during harper's tenure he has done a good job running the economy. He can be the biggest jerk to his party. Its not like he's all of a sudden a dictator.

Never said he was a dictator, but he is leading a democratic party and running it like a dictatorship. There are too many little things that have started to bug me lately like the leaks to Sun media. Its amazing how he runs such a tight ship but how many times his underlings have gotten burned for leaks and statements. He is a slick politician and by far has the best policy and has done a fair job as far as running the country. But he as the prime minister has an ethical responsiblity to act democratically. When you elect your mp, that mp is supposed to be speaking for his or her riding. If they cant do that because they have been muzzled then its no longer a democracy within the party. This has been getting progressively worse through the years and didnt start with Harper but he has been the worse we have seen with this style of leadership.

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Never said he was a dictator, but he is leading a democratic party and running it like a dictatorship. There are too many little things that have started to bug me lately like the leaks to Sun media. Its amazing how he runs such a tight ship but how many times his underlings have gotten burned for leaks and statements. He is a slick politician and by far has the best policy and has done a fair job as far as running the country. But he as the prime minister has an ethical responsiblity to act democratically. When you elect your mp, that mp is supposed to be speaking for his or her riding. If they cant do that because they have been muzzled then its no longer a democracy within the party. This has been getting progressively worse through the years and didnt start with Harper but he has been the worse we have seen with this style of leadership.

Oh trudeau was much worse than harper.

What is acting democratically. He is picked as party leader and was picked by his people in his riding. If people don't like it they can vote for someone else. People have picked him to lead. What is the point of elected reps then? He must be doing all right if the party keeps him on. Chretien was in a majority govt and got tossed out by his party. Harper only gets away with as much as his party and electorate will let him get away with it. Sounds fair and democratic to me.

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Oh trudeau was much worse than harper.

What is acting democratically. He is picked as party leader and was picked by his people in his riding. If people don't like it they can vote for someone else. People have picked him to lead. What is the point of elected reps then? He must be doing all right if the party keeps him on. Chretien was in a majority govt and got tossed out by his party. Harper only gets away with as much as his party and electorate will let him get away with it. Sounds fair and democratic to me.

As much as I hate(d) Trudeau, I really think Chretien was way worse than either of them.

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As much as I hate(d) Trudeau, I really think Chretien was way worse than either of them.

Trudeau was barely worthy of a bullet. His name will always be "remembered" around here. He was a bastard, and deserved a much earlier death than he got.

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First of all I have no disagreement with your analysis, however is that an adequate reason to turn your long running personal politics upside down, what does that say about your political philosphy?

Clearly the two other options are miles from where you started.

You do not choose who you will vote for based on which leader you figure is the "swellest guy", who would fit in with your drinking buddies best or would be most fun to golf with. You are choosing which party best understands where the country is at, where we need to go and has a plan to connect those dots together.

We keep getting fooled by politicians who make us feel good, if the you think the government can do a better job of raising your kids, saving for your retirement and funding your healthcare, that's fine, I figure you must have low self esteem if you do, but so be it. But if you think they're pulling money outta their butts to pay for it you're a fool, the money will come from you and me, with a 20 to 25% surcharge for the cost of running it through the government machine. Jack and Iggy will tell you they are going to squeeze it from the tight fisted rich people and businesses, but your even dumber if you believe that, because those people and businesses will find a way to pass it right along to you and me, with a 10 to 15% surchage for the cost of doing business.

The economy, taxes and business are all tied together and are far too complex to be summarized by a sound bite slogan, unfortunately that's about all we typically get in the media.

No one has a greater interest in the wellbeing of you and your family than you, stop deferring to the government to look after these things on your behalf. You know the government and their minions don't really give a damn about you, otherwise they'd answer the phone when you called.

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Its all about the money all of the time. Reform had good cost fiscal ideas, and right now harper has the best economic platform. I don't care how he treats the gnomes in the cpc party, just deliver on the economy. If it starts to suck, vote him out or stay home. And during harper's tenure he has done a good job running the economy. He can be the biggest jerk to his party. Its not like he's all of a sudden a dictator.

First let me say that in no way do I think Harper is going to become a dictator. I just hate this line of reasoning with a passion. Every democratically elected person who did become a dictator first gradually consolidated power under the justification that they were the only one who could "make the trains run on time." Its a dangerous line of reason, and you should get in the habit of rejecting it out of hand.

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Its all about the money all of the time. Reform had good cost fiscal ideas, and right now harper has the best economic platform. I don't care how he treats the gnomes in the cpc party, just deliver on the economy. If it starts to suck, vote him out or stay home. And during harper's tenure he has done a good job running the economy. He can be the biggest jerk to his party. Its not like he's all of a sudden a dictator.

Pretty much exactly how I feel about politics.

Also...I already voted and it wasn't Liberal. ;)

Edited by Moonbox
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First let me say that in no way do I think Harper is going to become a dictator. I just hate this line of reasoning with a passion. Every democratically elected person who did become a dictator first gradually consolidated power under the justification that they were the only one who could "make the trains run on time." Its a dangerous line of reason, and you should get in the habit of rejecting it out of hand.

Yes but we have a constitution and checks and balances to curb the power of elected mps and party leaders. That and canada is one of the most civilized places on the planet. Any attempt at dictatorship would be thwarted rather quickly. Hence, I don't have to worry about that and can focus on what's important, the money and how me and the country can make more of it.

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The Liberal candidate in our riding has never even visited it. She has never been more than 700km near it. Same with the next riding to ours. They know they haven't a snowball's chance in hell of winning in either riding, so they parachute two unknowns in. Total losers.

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Yes but we have a constitution and checks and balances to curb the power of elected mps and party leaders. That and canada is one of the most civilized places on the planet. Any attempt at dictatorship would be thwarted rather quickly. Hence, I don't have to worry about that and can focus on what's important, the money and how me and the country can make more of it.

And the yardstick of democracy keeps moving, and people with your attitude just cheer. The idea that our representatives actually represent us is for most of us a joke, party policy is decided by leaders advisers rather than its members, the government willfully ignores the rights of Parliament, and the consolidation of power in the PMO is now such that even cabinet ministers are out of the loop half the time. We have little enough voice in the system as it is.

But the trains run on time.

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I'm also going to vote Liberal tomorrow.

I mentioned in another thread that I'm voting Liberal because I prefer my local Liberal candidate to the other candidates, and that it didn't actually matter that much because my local Conservative will win by a large margin whatever I do.

But I'm also voting Liberal because, after thinking about it for a long time, I've decided I can't support the Conservatives this time out.

I ought to be somebody who would vote Liberal most years. I believe in conservative finances and liberal social views. And yet, for most of my life, voting Liberal hasn't been something I could even consider. My utter contempt for Chretien (although I was never old enough to vote against him) and my disgust over the sponsorship scandal and Paul Martin's comments in that campaign, and my dismay that a twit like Stephane Dion could potentially be our prime minister prevented me from even considering voting Liberal. And, of course, growing up in a typical Alberta home where Liberals were believed to be criminal scum didn't help matters.

I believed for a long time that the Liberals needed to be removed from power. I still believe that it was necessary. Not just "good", but necessary. I was very grateful that it happened. And I was excited to see what Stephen Harper would bring to the job.

And I believe that he did a pretty good job for a few years. But lately I've become more and more disappointed with the Conservatives. You guys know me and you know that I'm not one to shed crocodile tears for airport workers that Helena Guergis yelled at, or for Omar Khadr, or for Taliban detainees who got transferred to the custody of people almost as vicious as they are. I really couldn't care less about that stuff. My disappointment with the Harper government is just that. I feel like they've been letting me down on the sort of things they promised to do. I'm worried over the cost overruns in the F35 program. I feel like they spent far too much money advertising the Economic Stimulus Plan, which came across more like ads for the Conservatives than useful information for the public. I feel like they're giving away the store to corporations. And the final straw is that I felt disgusted and appalled by the cost of the G8/G20. A billion dollars. I still can't wrap my head around that. People might say "bah, the Liberals would be no better!" ...but neither are the Conservatives.

So I was more than willing to consider an alternative, and Michael Ignatieff doesn't seem like a bad guy to me. I'm a little perplexed as to why so many people react negatively to him. His speaking voice? His eyebrows? I hear that he's "arrogant" a lot. I don't know.

I made fun of the attempt to portray his family as hardscrabble immigrants who came to Canada with just the lint in their pockets. But that's not an issue. That's a badly thought out branding attempt, somewhere along the lines of Sweater Vests. And I've been laughing my ass off over the "Rise Up!" thing, because it was such a contrived and lame attempt to create some kind of Springsteen Obama vibe that just failed miserably. But again, that's branding, not substance.

I've read pieces of a couple of his books (it's perhaps not a great sign that I was able to find them in the super-discount clearance bin at my local bookstore at the height of an election...). I've read over their platform. And aside from the plan to spend billions of dollars caring for withered old baby boomers, there's nothing I really have an issue with. So after thinking about things for a long time, and grappling with long-held prejudices, I've decided that it's time for me to go Liberal. Sadly, that decision comes at a time when every other man woman and child in this country has decided it's time to abandon the Liberals.

I also feel like a middle party is a good thing. I've read some people speculating that this election is the first step on the road to a 2-party system, split right and left with no room in the center anymore. I hope that doesn't happen. I think the danger of losing votes to "the center" prevents either the NDP or the Conservatives from being too far to either extreme. I think that's a good thing. I don't want to see a future where extremists rule both sides and voters have to decide which bunch of kooks they fear less.

I'm Kimberly Johnson, and I'm voting Liberal tomorrow. Rise Up, Canada!

-k

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He is a slick politician and by far has the best policy and has done a fair job as far as running the country.

Harper is far from slick. As far as politicians go, he's pretty rare, because he puts Canada ahead of his own and/or his party's popularity. The whole "he's not democratic" thing is the latest attempted way to brand him by the opposition. He believes in allowing free votes. He even made a promise to have a vote on same sex marriage because they way it happened though the courts was not the way our democracy works.

Ignatieff during the debate created this notion that if you're not looking to include everyone's views, you're somehow not being democratic. That's just not the case. If it was, every majority government in Canadian history could be labeled as undemocratic. The great irony is an example of being undemocratic is how the Liberals named Ignatieff as their leader without an election.

The other thing Ignatieff has claimed is that you can't trust Stephen Harper with the economy. How quickly we forget that he campaigned on bringing in the Green Shift during uncertain times. Where would Canada be if more had voted Liberal last election.

Harper doesn't want MPs speaking on certain topics and that's perfectly understandable. He did lose the 2004 election because the view of Randy White were used to convince voter's he had a hidden agenda. The Liberals have sunk pretty low to brand him as "scary" since then. Why do you think that is? Do you really think they believe that Harper would end abortion if he got a majority? If he did, the Conservatives wouldn't win another election for a long time. The scary thing for the Liberals is that Harper would get a lot of work done with a majority and that would keep the Liberals out of power for some time.

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This is an astute and an important observation. (I'm glad not to be alone in thinking it.):

I also feel like a middle party is a good thing. ..... I think the danger of losing votes to "the center" prevents either the NDP or the Conservatives from being too far to either extreme. I think that's a good thing. I don't want to see a future where extremists rule both sides and voters have to decide which bunch of kooks they fear less.

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One of the things that will make this an interesting day, too, is to see how many folks would claim to vote NDP to the pollsters, but sober up a little once standing in the polling booth.

(Not wanting to rain on the parade, boys, but I just don't buy it. I figure the tsunami alarms foretell a signifigant splash of cold water certainly, but not a recontouring of parliament Hill.)

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Good thread.

He talked about the reputation Harper has behind the scenes of being ruthless and not willing to negotiate or accept any dissagreement from party members.

...

Who does Harper keep around him. Who has he allowed to have a voice and to speak out in the public somewhat, and I realized it was the two guys in the party I can stand the least, Baird and Poilievre.

...

We need to get rid of the bloc, reboot the blue and somehow in all of this not get a left wingnut into power that will spend us into oblivion.

A guy that I know has a friend whose brother married this woman....

I have worked in government/political circles and IMHO, once you get to the PMO, you are no longer dealing with people in the same way as your neighbour or your boss. The "niceness" factor is just another attribute to be played. The overriding characteristic of politicians at this level is their ambition. Do you think Chretien was a nice guy? (I'll admit that Chretien loved to work a crowd.)

Harper seems to get along with his wife and kids. Harper and Flaherty make a good team. Harper has stood by and taken heat for his cabinet and caucus members (and they all know it). Harper has also lead the two longest surviving minority governments in Canadian history.

In short, I don't give much weight to people who claim that Harper is a dictatorial, selfish, autocrat. First, the claims entirely miss the point about politicians. And second, Harper in practice gets along with people.

----

Last point. I'm probably going to vote Liberal today too. My current MP is BQ but that obviously will change tonight. The NDP candidate is one of those wacky ones and I would never vote for Jack!™ anyway. The Conservative has zero chance of winning so I'll probably vote Liberal. Fortunately, the Liberal candidate is a sensible person who will likely lose.

The other night, I was walking around in part of my riding and I realized that there were far fewer Bloc signs on balconies than in past elections. It is telling that NDP signs have not replaced the Bloc signs.

I also feel like a middle party is a good thing. I've read some people speculating that this election is the first step on the road to a 2-party system, split right and left with no room in the center anymore. I hope that doesn't happen. I think the danger of losing votes to "the center" prevents either the NDP or the Conservatives from being too far to either extreme. I think that's a good thing. I don't want to see a future where extremists rule both sides and voters have to decide which bunch of kooks they fear less.
If Canada were to have two federal parties then you can be certain that both would put forward leaders very close to the centre or face rejection in elections. In both parties, the extremist wings would exist to keep the base happy but they wouldn't have much influence. By and large, and depending on voting rules, that's how it works elsewhere.

But we are far, far from that in Canada. To start with, the Bloc may be down in this election but it would be foolish to believe that a Bloc-like party will disappear easily. Canada is still a country of regions.

A long time ago, the federal Liberal Party was adept at brokering regional interests. The only federal party at present with sufficient depth to do this is the Conservatives but their connection in Quebec is tenuous and in urban English Canada almost non-existent.

I don't see an easy resurrection of the federal Liberals and the NDP as currently constituted has all the makings of a regional broker disaster.

Edited by August1991
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It is telling that NDP signs have not replaced the Bloc signs.

It has been a political truism that the bigger the change folks are about to make, the less they want to talk about it. Beware, oh beware the silent election.

Even the folks who have been talking this time, have not been talking about issues that matter. Ab-so-lutely anything could be in the mill.

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