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James Roscoe

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Re: What are you opening for Election Day?

by James Roscoe » Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:52 pm

Joe, you express yourself very well. We could probably agree on where to split the differences. I am not sure if Thomas would go along with us, nor the hard liners on my side of the issue. For the record, I have generally opposed the war in Iraq from the beginning too, although I always thought that getting rid of Saddam was worth more than you probably did. It quickly became obvious that there was no exit plan. I am glad to see that Rumsfeld is finally on the sidelines. Better late than never. Sorry for keeping this subthread alive.
Last edited by James Roscoe on Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:53 pm, edited 1 time in total.
.....we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain -- that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom -- and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth. A. Lincoln
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Mike B.

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Re: What are you opening for Election Day?

by Mike B. » Thu Nov 09, 2006 2:53 pm

"No one pretends that democracy is perfect or all wise. Indeed, it has been said that democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others that have been tried from time to time." - Winston Churchill

Ian Sutton wrote:I'd also be interested in Sue/Neils comments on NZ politics with the added complexity of the Maori representation, but also how a multi-party political climate works in practice.
Ian


I can't comment on the NZ situation, but we have a multi-party system here in Canada. Like your two-party system, it has its pros and cons.

Right now, we have a minority Conservative government that resulted after the fall of a Liberal minority government.

A minority scenario usually requires the government work with the opposition, which in theory works in the best interests of Canadians.

Right now, the Conservatives seem to be doing well. Without a majority, they have shelved the radical social-conservative policies, instead focusing on fiscal policy, stronger accountability measures, tax reductions, increased support for our woefully neglected military - things most people can support.

They recently introduced environmental legislation, but when the leftist New Democratic Party threatened a confidence vote (which could bring down the government) they agreed to put the bill to a committee for more work - the expected result being stronger measures to protect the environment.

The New Democrats also supported a recent Conservative tax policy.

Of course, the multi-party system creates some bizarre bedfellows (as above), particulary with the separatist Bloc Quebecois. They don't run candidates outside the province of Quebec and their main ambition is an independent Quebec outside of Canada. Politically, their members run the full spectrum, but in Parliament they tend to vote to the left.

Quebec's population is one of the largest in Canada and up until a few years ago they were the nation's Official Opposition party. Go figure - a separatist party representing the entire country.

Canadians don't register as Americans do - Republican, Independent or Democrat. And though as a country we tend to lean a little left of centre, I think we're not as tied to one party or another.

Of course, there's always problems with vote-splitting resulting in a party becoming a majority government without receiving a majority of the popular vote. For years, the Conservatives were dogged with this problem.

In fact, their history is one of splintering the right. The Conservatives and the Progressives formed the Progressive Conservatives (an oxymoron, I know). More recently a group of the PCs splintered into the far-right Reform Party, which then morphed into the Canadian Alliance, before rejoining with the PCs to form the current Conservative Party of Canada.

Whew, that's a lot to follow.

Anyway, I've gone on enough. But from my experiences and observations, I prefer the multi-party system.
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Paul B.

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Re: What are you opening for Election Day?

by Paul B. » Thu Nov 09, 2006 3:33 pm

Mike B. wrote:The Conservatives and the Progressives formed the Progressive Conservatives (an oxymoron, I know).

That oxymoron used to make me cynical long ago. I figure that when a party has an oxymoronic name, it actually serves them well because the name attempts to say nothing creatively ... unlike if they were to call themselves the Redneck Radicals. I never thought of the old PC party as particularly conservative anyway, notwithstanding its "Loyalist" Tory roots. They might have been in favour of economic Darwinism as I call it, but socially I wouldn't put them in the conservative camp.
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Mike B.

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Re: What are you opening for Election Day?

by Mike B. » Thu Nov 09, 2006 3:43 pm

Paul, I voted PC a few years back when Joe Clark was leader (for the second time). I trusted him far more than Chretien. And Stockwell Day, well I know the guy from his time in the Alberta government.

I didn't vote for Harper's Conservatives - still too socially conservative - but overall they seem to be doing OK. I think breaking their promise on income trusts was the right decision (and many would disagree with that).

Anne McLellan was the MP in my riding going into the last election, but I couldn't bring myself to support Martin or the Liberal party at the time. I held my nose and voted NDP, knowing that the Conservatives would win in our riding (and they did).

I kinda wish Garth Turner was the MP for my riding. At least it would be interesting.
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