Friday, March 25, 2011

NDP, Liberals crazy to hand Stephen Harper Conservatives a majority government by forcing election

Ipsos-Reid poll shows Conservatives at 43%, Liberal at 24% and NDP at 16% - have Jack Layton and Michael Ignatieff lost their minds?    

UPDATED - 11:20 p.m. Friday - Here is the full article that was deleted due to Blogger problems earlier today.

lt already is the election that no one wants - and it will likely end up with the results that everyone but Conservatives fears - a solid Stephen Harper majority government granted four years of untrammelled power.

That's what an Ipsos-Reid poll predicted - with the Conservatives leading easily with 43% national support against the Liberals at 24%, the NDP at 16% and the Greens at 6%.  The Bloc Quebecois has 41% of support in Quebec.

So what on earth were federal New Democrats and Liberals thinking when they voted out the minority Conservative government?

Clearly the atmosphere in Parliament - a strange mixture of testosterone, self-delusion and anger - encouraged opposition parties to mount a Charge of the Light Brigade into the Conservative cannons.

And while I agree that the government's behaviour on a variety of issues is reprehensible, the only thing worse would be to give the Conservatives a majority government free hand to do as they please for four years.

Yet that's exactly what the NDP and Liberals voted to do.

Let's be clear - the Conservatives have never under Stephen Harper's leadership- repeat never - started an election campaign with as large a lead as the polls show they have in this election.

Yes - they may blow it.  The Harper government has repeatedly gotten close to majority support numbers only to screw it up time and again.

But that's at the very least wishful thinking.

And look at the state of the English-Canada opposition parties:  Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff is hopelessly mired in mediocrity -  19% behind the Tories to start an election.  And Ignatieff has consistently failed to connect with voters.

NDP leader Jack Layton is far more popular with Canadians - a high approval rating that Ignatieff can only envy - but the party itself is at 16% - hardly threatening to become government and with vague hopes at best of replacing the Liberals as offical opposition.

The Green Party?  Forgettable.  Elizabeth May's third try for a seat in Parliament in her third riding in her third region of Canada will fail again.  Saanich-Gulf Islands MP and cabinet minister Gary Lunn survived a serious Liberal challenge in 2008 when former Green and very environmentally concerned candidate Briony Penn couldn't beat Lunn even with the NDP candidate dropping out in another election controversy.

This time the Greens will face all three other parties running full campaigns - and their unblemished three decades of federal failure will continue.

Then there's Quebec, where Bloc Quebecois leader Gilles Duceppe has overwhelming support and whose party will take the vast majority of seats.  The Conservatives, Liberals and NDP can only hope to hold the few seats they now have - especially NDP deputy leader Tom Mulcair in the former Liberal stronghold of Outremont.

And so it begins - an election with the potential not for the Tory tales of a Liberal-NDP-Bloc coalition but a Conservative majority. 

Those who are outraged with Harper and thrilled with an election on the opposition claims of contempt of Parliament, abuse of democracy and other crimes should steel themselves for bitter reality - this election is for the Conservatives to lose - and every indication is that they have been preparing for years to win it with an outright majority.

As Winston Churchill aptly said: "However beautiful the strategy, you should occasionally look at the results."

Some strategy for the Liberals and NDP.  Some results for the Conservatives.

Photo credits - Layton - Montrealais photo; Ignatieff - Paul Teee photo; Harper - Remy Steinegger photo



Bill Tieleman said...

Sorry - Blogger problems have lost most of this post & I cannot get in to edit and fix it yet! Please check back soon.

Anonymous said...

The headline says it all... pity.

Anonymous said...

Are the "blogger problems" an example of an "in an out" blog post or what?
Speaking of which.......will the Green party be using its national expenditure allowance more in BC/Vancouver Island than elsewhere so as to favor Elizabeth May and "exceed" the local riding spending limits?
Perhaps that would really be an "out and out" (largely on the assumption she won't win and therefore won't be "out and then in").
And when will the news of the not so secret Liberal/NDP and Green strategic voting alliance be talked about..........
Probably the day after Michael Ignatieff answers cleanly the "coalition" question.
It would appear that of all the leaders, Jack Layton is the one who has kept his sense of humor the best so far -- which we can all hope continues.

Grant G said...

Your are a little late Bill T...

I wouldn`t put any stock in that poll Bill T...

Perhaps you should listen to Simi Sara today on cknw(between 1:00pm and 1:30 pm)

Her snap poll had callers choosing to vote for the Federal NDP over the Cons by a wide margin...

Ipsos poll is a bust!...

And no matter what happens I suspect we could have three new Federal leaders after the election...

Let me know if you need a little cheese Bill to go with your WHINE!

Anonymous said...

Love it. Harper Majority is sweet music.

istvan said...

anon 3:46 a LIBERAL minority would not be the end of the world.The cons were brought down for CONTEMPT .Give your head a shake.

terrence said...

The LIEberals have a long and inglorious history of LIES and corruption - the Feds are no better or worse than the Provincial - both are from the same pond scum.

King Cretin was an abomination, and so is Iggy - is he REALLY sure he is a Canadian? He is on the public record describing himself as an American. Oh, yeah, that was OKAY; it was to Iggy's advantage at the time - what an opportunistic twit- a typical LIEberal.

The LIEberals have to GAIN over 80 seats and not lose any to form a majority.

Taliban Jack knows the NDP will NEVER form a government; but maybe they can "influence" the Cons - who, as Bill points out, will most likely get a majority.

Harper may well have suckered Iggy into defeating the Cons, just so the Cons can get a majority.

A few NDP votes in BC mean squat across Canada - most Canadian elections are OVER at 8:00 pm EST (5:00 pm PST). The votes from Manitoba to BC almost never have an impact on who runs Canada in Ottawa

istvan said...

terrence,you are an idiot.Go somwhere else.I rest my case.

outsourced said...

Call me crazy, but I one who welcomes this election. Let's try to save Canada from the neo-cons. If you thought BC Rail Gate was bad, what about the neo-con privatization plans. The Harper cons are corrupt and are in contempt of Parliament. The budget is bad enough - welfare for the rich, a few token for the middle and low income (but not too much that would spoil them), 36 billion and mounting for aircraft, more leaky nuclear facilities -- but lies and corruption and failing to even try to work a compromise is enough. The water/energy lobbyist scandal has only just begun to get traction in Native communities too. Harper is an 'end times' evangelical so unquestioned support for Israel is a given. Its time for the cons to go. No time is good for divorce, but this is enough - anybody but Harper (well almost)!

I'm sure if Harper could have called a war, he would just to stay in power. If Canadians are so stupid to return the cons to power, so be it. We reap what we sow. The pain will be unbearable continuing the pillaging of Native lands and extending to everyone else who is not rich.

Anonymous said...

Sleazy Steve needs to find a real job.

cherylb said...

BC Mary said...

Well ... it seems to me that if you believe in democracy and accountability,

and knowing we had a federal government being reprimanded IN-House by the Speaker for "Contempt of Parliament"

which we know to be true,

absolutely true (the secretive Harper Gang refused to supply the necessary costs of the programs they planned to bring in),

then this is the most necessary federal election we've ever had in Canada.

God, if only we had such a provincial election coming up in British Columbia!

We could vote all the liars out of office.!

St Roch said...

You're paying WAY TOO MUCH attention to polls and prejudice my friend.

Harper will NEVER be popular with the 52% of the Canadian population who are female...that will always be his downfall.

I think what you're really upset about is the fact that maybe for once a genuine coalition will be created in this country and we already know that's a problem for traditional pols like you.

As a genuine NDPer you lost all credibility as a pundit by your disingenuous participation in the dumping Carole James.

Interesting, isn’t it, that Jennie Kwan hasn’t been even a blip on the public stage since she delivered that little ghost written speech.

You've done your best to wreck the party provincially - now you're out to do the same thing federally.

Time to wake up and smell the roses.

Great Britain hasn't fallen apart because there is a coalition government there - how come?

terrence said...

Blogger istvan said..." terrence,you are an idiot.Go somwhere else.I rest my case."

Coming from you, istvan, that is the HIGHEST compliment YOU could EVER give me, and the HIGHEST COMPLEMENT I HAVE EVER RECEIVED on the internet.


I look forwrd to more of your deep, meaningful compliments. You have my deepest THANKS!

Anonymous said...

I agree with outsourced....

Harper=Campbell(Christy) and the BC Libs

Just go out and vote and quit whinging. What else do you take for granted in your life?


Gord L said...

My advice ... don't keep the public worrying about the horse race and who will win. Focus on the real issue of who your party really works for. If Canadians show up and vote for a government that will govern in the Public Interest rather than for the Private Corporate Interest, we will wind up with a much better country for the average Canadian.

If you're voting Liberal or Conservative, you're voting for the same parties that corporate executives (like wealthy bankers) are voting for .... executives that make $millions$ each year, not the average $40K like most of us. Ask yourself what you have in common with these wealthy corporate voters who incessantly press their favorite LIB/CONS parties for even more tax cuts and, therefore, even bigger paychecks, all at your expense when they lie to you about how Canada can no longer afford healthcare, education costs, etc. and drive up your regressive user fees.

It's time to decide whose side you are on ... social democracy for your own good or runaway corporate rule for the benefit of the rich and powerful. Vote NDP or Green or Canadian Action Party, etc., the real parties that would fight for social justice.

Remember Tommy Douglas's warning of the danger of 'mice' voting for 'white cats' and 'black cats' to govern the country. Think about it.

Ryan Windsor said...

Renee Hetherington has all but disappeared and the NDP candidate is weak. Last time round the controversy actually made 3000 people vote NDP. Usually I appreciate your thoughtful commentary on issues but on this you are wrong sorry Bill.

outsourced said...

I would rather the conservatives win than die by a thousand cuts. The cons are killing us slowly. Let Canadians, if they are so stupid to vote for these 'shock and awe' disaster capitalists, then 4 years going into a new recession will cure them for a generation or two.

Its not about who can win, but about right and wrong. For me, its anybody but Harper. He failed us. The neo-cons and theo-cons will be history. The time of Thatcher, Reagan, Bush and Bush and Harper has gone. The train left the station and no one will want to get on board "I'm running to reduce government so that we can grow the economy!" for some time.

I'm sure Cameron in the UK will meet a similar fate. Keep giving the rich welfare and the poor prisons. Its pure free market capitalism brought in with a little 'shock and awe'.

So far from god and so close to the Chicago school economics a la Milton Friedman.

Anonymous said...

Moammar Harper is going down.


Grant G said...

Paid right wing media spinners required.


Greg Cameron said...

I think Bill is right about one thing - Harper will probably take the Cup this playoff season, so to speak. I shudder to think. Whatever deity you please save us all! The popularity of Harper eludes me completely. I'm no big fan of Ignatieff, but he didn't come back for us? Perhaps, but then again you don't have to leave Canada to favour American business interests, cater to transnational corporations, undercut workers rights and environmental legislation, and hasten the race to the bottom. If the Conservatives get in(and they probably will), we should all learn the old Brothers-in-Law song "Canada-USA." Since I'm here, I hope Bill is not giving completely unqualified praise to that give-away paper he appears in. 24(or whatever it's called) has openly been shilling for the new Sun tv station, blurring the lines between reporting, advertising, and propaganda. They have openly cast any claims to being objective journalists to the winds. "Refreshing" indeed! I also saw another give-away paper cite the Fraser Institute about health care(a minor masterpiece of double talk and misdirection) with no mention of the Fraser Institute's long and undisguised opposition to Medicare. A sin of omission, surely. There's no shortage of people - hacks and otherwise - to kiss the behinds of the rich. All kneel down before transnational capital. You're simultaneously seeing the death of journalism in Canada and of Canada itself. It should make us all sad. But I'm sure it'll make some people laugh, long and darkly....Greg Cameron, Surrey, B.C., Canada