"I hope he gets impeached before I get to speak to him."
September 27, 2019 7:22 AM   Subscribe

"It's disgusting that the president could inflame hatred against people and be so divisive." With less than a month to go before Canada's October 21st election, Jagmeet Singh comes out strong against the president of Canada's largest trading partner. What else (other than that and that) has been happening in the Canadian election?

According to CBC's poll tracker, not much (other than the Bloc passing the Conservatives for 2nd place in Quebec). Nationally, the Liberals and Conservatives have been drifting along in a virtual tie around 33%, with the NDP (14%) and Greens (10%) in 3rd and 4th place.

Perhaps the leaders' debates (featuring livestream viewing parties at cinemas across the country) on October 7th and October 10th will change that, with the climate-change-denying and immigration-hating Maxime Bernier of the People's Party of Canada - who lost the previous Conservative leadership race by a hair - winning his appeal to participate in the debates. The poorly attended [satire] first debate didn't seem to have much of an effect.

The parties are hoping their policies will make a difference. Major policy announcements so far:

Liberals:
25% land and ocean protection by 2025
Ban assault weapons and restrict handguns
Tax breaks and opening up cellphone competition if rates don't go down
Liberals’ first-time home buyer plan will create fake hauntings to drive down prices [satire]

Conservatives:
Tax credits for public transit riders
Tax credits for green home renovations
A "universal tax cut"
Conservative tax break allows citizens to decide what government services they want cut [satire]

NDP:
Rental subsidies and 500,000 new affordable housing units
Cross-Canada clean energy corridor
Pharmacare and dentacare
Health benefits for part-time and contract workers [press release]

Greens:
Stop the Trans-Mountain pipeline
Zero-emissions transit
Decriminalization of all drugs
Require use of real names on social media [not satire]

PPC:
Maxime Bernier emerges as this season’s shady bitch who loves drama [satire]

Bloc Quebecois:
A ban on veiled voting
A carbon-neutral campaign
Power over asylum claims equal to Ottawa's

The CBC has a handy breakdown of the parties' positions.
posted by clawsoon (101 comments total) 20 users marked this as a favorite
 
Trudeau and Greta Thunberg will both be marching in Montreal today. Thunberg has spent her entire career calling out hypocritical politicians. This may not be a good day for Trudeau.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 7:45 AM on September 27 [15 favorites]


I think people like the concept of the Greens better than they like the actual green candidates who are a pretty middling bunch. It's amazing that they're coming so close to the NDP in popular support.
posted by GuyZero at 7:49 AM on September 27 [6 favorites]


Thunberg is a white European, she might not care about blackface the way we all wish she'd care... just saying.
posted by Homo neanderthalensis at 7:53 AM on September 27 [3 favorites]


Thunberg may not care about blackface, but she certainly cares about oil pipelines.
posted by Capt. Renault at 7:54 AM on September 27 [25 favorites]


Both the Greens and the NDP have played some pretty interesting meta-politics recently. The NDP have refused to partner with the Conservatives in a minority government, and the Greens have refused to partner "with any party that moves on pipelines" (read the Liberals and anyone else who hopes to pick up any seats in Alberta). That plays well to their electorate (don't fear voting for us), but it also sets up some interesting power plays should there be a minority government.
posted by Popular Ethics at 8:05 AM on September 27


If Bernier gets a seat or two in Canada's more racist parts, will he put aside beefs to support a Scheer government? I bet he'd relish that meeting.
posted by Popular Ethics at 8:10 AM on September 27


> The NDP have refused to partner with the Conservatives in a minority government, and the Greens have refused to partner "with any party that moves on pipelines"

[in which someone who hasn’t closely followed canadian politics since jack layton walked the earth blunders in]

good god! were either of those things ever an option in the first place? like, the canadian greens have historically been kind of a pro-capitalism trashfire, but any green party worth the name definitely has a hard line against increased oil extraction, right? and what on earth is the ndp even for if they for a single second considered propping up the conservatives? that’s not the ndp. that’s some u.k. lib dem junk.

basically: please reassure me that the ndp is still a decent party, because i’d really like it if there were still at least one decent political party in north america.
posted by Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon at 8:19 AM on September 27 [3 favorites]


The Greens have also said that they want to move to completely domestic production in Canada. How they square that with no new (Eastern) pipeline is beyond me. We've had one Lac Megantic already (and a number of train roll-overs since). I am appalled to think of the rail traffic we'd need nationally to feed the Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic refineries.
posted by bonehead at 8:22 AM on September 27 [3 favorites]




Reclusive Novelist Thomas Pynchon: and what on earth is the ndp even for if they for a single second considered propping up the conservatives?

Canadian parties tend to be very demur about minority government alliances, always saying that they're open to working with anyone on matters of common interest, that they're not going to rule out any options, blahblahblah. Singh is trying some impolitic politicking with the statements on minority government alliances and Trump. Might be what he needs to shake the race up. We'll see.
posted by clawsoon at 8:32 AM on September 27 [3 favorites]


I suspect that many voters are trying to gauge which non-Conservative party is likely to beat the Conservatives. The Liberals won last time because a whole lot of voters decided that they were going to win. (Had Jack Layton not passed away, I'm reasonably certain that he would be Prime Minister today, as voters would have coalesced around the NDP.)

I'm concerned that the Liberals aren't going to do enough about climate change - or about anything, really. But I'm more concerned that switching to another party would be like handing a vote to the Conservatives, who don't care about climate change at all.

For me, it probably doesn't matter - I live in Toronto-St.Paul's, which is probably the safest Liberal riding in the country. (Though it did go NDP provincially, so you never know.)
posted by tallmiddleagedgeek at 8:37 AM on September 27 [3 favorites]


basically: please reassure me that the ndp is still a decent party, because i’d really like it if there were still at least one decent political party in north america.

This is exactly my dilemma as a voter right now. My riding should go Liberal as it historically does with or without me but I do have concerns.
posted by warriorqueen at 8:44 AM on September 27 [2 favorites]


One of the ironies that this campaign has made clear to me is that a sizeable number of Canadians want a Prime Minister who is a white man who says that racism and sexism are bad.
posted by clawsoon at 8:51 AM on September 27 [14 favorites]


please reassure me that the ndp is still a decent party, because i’d really like it if there were still at least one decent political party in north america

What makes you think they're not? Your statement was a reaction to their assertion that they would not team up with Conservatives. I guess I'm confused why that would make you question their decency.
posted by rocket88 at 9:09 AM on September 27 [1 favorite]


Had Jack Layton not passed away, I'm reasonably certain that he would be Prime Minister today, as voters would have coalesced around the NDP

I'm not sure. NDP support crashed in Quebec when Tom Mulcair criticized their racist bans on religious clothing. Would Jack have done any different?
posted by rocket88 at 9:11 AM on September 27 [7 favorites]


I haven't really been following because in my riding there's only one candidate I can vote for. But I wonder if Singh's game here is to bait Trump into attacking him, ideally with some racist bullshit. I could totally imagine a racist attack by Trump would boost his popularity greatly.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 9:29 AM on September 27 [1 favorite]


Conservatives:
Tax credits for public transit riders
Tax credits for green home renovations
A "universal tax cut"
Conservative tax break allows citizens to decide what government services they want cut [satire]


JFC the tax "burden" in Canada is not onerous. And a tax credit to transit users is like pointing and laughing at poor people. Hey Conservatives; you want to encourage transit and help make it more affordable? Subsidize transit nationally to make it free. It'll certianly cost much less than any proposed tax cut and would help people who actually need it rather than those who are trying to decide between the Merc and the Rolls for their teenager's first car.

The Conservatives say a family of four that regularly commuted on transit in the Greater Toronto Area would save nearly $1,000 per year.
For a 15% credit to be worth $1000 the hypothetical family of four would need to be spending $6,666 annually on transit passes or $555.55 monthly. A monthly TTC pass for adults is $151.15, children between 13 and 17 is 122.45 and under 13 is free. So our hypothetical family couldn't include any children under 13 to come near the $1000 credit. And if the family choose the twelve month discounted rate ( $138.55 $112.25) they'd only realise a $900 credit. And if their kids are under 13 the credit is worth $498.78.

And that in likely the most expensive transit in the country. If the family happens to live someplace with cheaper transit the credit is worth even less (The credit for for a family of four with two 13-17 year old kids in my city is only worth $288).

And then that money is only available if the family is making at least $24,138.
posted by Mitheral at 9:32 AM on September 27 [19 favorites]


Singh seems really rough around the edges. This is just the latest version of that. I continue to think he was a mistake. I wish someone like Ruth Ellen Brosseau had been given a chance for example, given than Nathan Cullen and Charlie Angus weren't possible.

The NDP still hasn't come back from its existential crisis of being torn between labour and social justice on the one hand and environmentalism on the other. Those wings are still opposed and it shows in their inability to push in Central Canada as effectively as they used to. I do think there's a place for an environmental left party in Canada, especially as the Greens seem to be positioned more like a Conservative party with an environmental focus.
posted by bonehead at 9:34 AM on September 27 [11 favorites]


I live in Toronto-St.Paul's, which is probably the safest Liberal riding in the country.

I grew up in Mount Royal, PET's old riding, I think I have you beat there.

My current riding -- the liberal MP ignored my question about JT, but I asked before the high school stuff came out. I might ask again, old "high school friend" who has not touched the discussion.
posted by jeather at 9:54 AM on September 27 [2 favorites]


And a tax credit to transit users is like pointing and laughing at poor people. Hey Conservatives; you want to encourage transit and help make it more affordable? Subsidize transit nationally to make it free. It'll certianly cost much less than any proposed tax cut and would help people who actually need it rather than those who are trying to decide between the Merc and the Rolls for their teenager's first car.

I'm on my phone and need to watch my blood pressure, but this is a rerun of a Harper policy, so we already know how it works, and it's a classic Harper policy - it sounds good, but hands 200 million dollars a year out without creating a single observable new transit rider. It does funnel that 200 million disproportionately to affluent workers, and of those disproportionately in the outer suburbs/commuter belt (and by the way swing ridings) of Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. It's so depressingly good at doing everything wrong, it's pure genius. And I'm furious if the media lets slide a policy that we already know sucks, but let's be honest - I'm surprised that the media even covers an actual policy.
posted by Homeboy Trouble at 10:06 AM on September 27 [14 favorites]


I think maybe, just maybe, there's a place for Mr Singh to be able to put voice to a truth in a populist way given a rise in populist politics. Particularly given that he represents the only party with a workable platform for, y'know, the population.
posted by mce at 11:35 AM on September 27 [3 favorites]


The Greens have also said that they want to move to completely domestic production in Canada. How they square that with no new (Eastern) pipeline is beyond me. We've had one Lac Megantic already (and a number of train roll-overs since). I am appalled to think of the rail traffic we'd need nationally to feed the Ontario, Quebec and Atlantic refineries.

I'm not totally sold on the Green policy here (who cares where the oil comes from really), but it's pretty clearly about a rapid move away from fossil fuels (since they want to stop sales of fossil fuel vehicles by 2030 and phase out the tar sands between 2030-35). In the context of rapidly declining fossil fuel use, building Energy East (when it would be completed in something like 2025, at the earliest) would be totally insane. It's all about transition, not about keeping everything the same minus pipelines.

But what really feels important to me and is a key difference between the Green and NDP platforms is rail. We desperately need high speed rail to replace air travel and the Greens will build high speed rail for Toronto-Ottawa-Montreal and for Calgary-Edmonton (plus invest another $600M annually in regional rail), while the NDP is just promising the ridiculously named "high-frequency rail" between Windsor and Quebec and other rail improvements (with no dollar figure attached). That kind of weak incrementalism seems better suited to the Liberals than the NDP, if we're to believe they are serious about climate.
posted by ssg at 12:30 PM on September 27 [3 favorites]


Canadians want a Prime Minister who is a white man who says that racism and sexism are bad.

Or as was quoted on the ceeb's At Issue panel: two white guys arguing over which of them is less racist.
posted by Capt. Renault at 12:44 PM on September 27 [4 favorites]


bonehead: The NDP still hasn't come back from its existential crisis of being torn between labour and social justice on the one hand and environmentalism on the other.

I like the clean energy corridor idea. It's got a traditional labour appeal (lots of jobs cutting a path through the Canadian Shield), and it might just help Alberta realize how much sun and wind energy they're sitting on.
posted by clawsoon at 12:50 PM on September 27 [2 favorites]


Greta Thunberg meets Trudeau, tells him he's not doing enough to fight climate change
[Maxime] Bernier has described Thunberg on Twitter as "clearly mentally unstable" and suggested her climate activism is spreading irrational fears about the environment.
Of course he did. :-/
posted by clawsoon at 1:12 PM on September 27 [1 favorite]


might just help Alberta realize how much sun and wind energy they're sitting on

I'm trying to come up with something pithy and funny about the state of affairs in my home province, and just can't. So many people here are invested in fighting a battle that looks to me to be meaningless - even if a pipeline does get built, the world is moving on and the oil here is too damn expensive to get out of the ground. Meanwhile, we have tremendous potential for wind, solar, and geothermal (hello, abandoned wells and unemployed drilling crews) but the past, the past is calling, and nobody wants to hear different.

I'd like to say that something might change, but not this election. The 338 map for the province is solid blue, and I don't think it's wrong.
posted by nubs at 1:38 PM on September 27 [8 favorites]


My grandmother always said, "Sunny Alberta has never failed us yet."
posted by clawsoon at 1:40 PM on September 27


Scheer's platform is almost entirely reheated Harper 2015. Do the Conservatives remember that they lost that election using that platform? Why would anybody vote for a spineless version of what they previously rejected?

What remains my biggest disappointment with Trudeau is the failure to bring in some form of proportional representation. Had he done that, there would be no conversations about the possibility of a Conservative government, minority or majority. We'd have a Liberal minority, and be trying to figure out which NDP and Green policies they'd have to enact in order to maintain power.
posted by GhostintheMachine at 3:57 PM on September 27 [9 favorites]


I like the clean energy corridor idea.

Well, "clean energy corridor" sure sounds a lot better than power transmission line, which is all it actually is. It's not a bad thing to do, but as far as the many, many things we desperately need to act on to tackle climate change in this country, it's way down the list. Right now AB and SK (along with NS) are the worst provinces for carbon in electrical generation (all around 80% fossil fuel), so while AB and SK have huge opportunities in wind and solar, that energy is desperately needed at home, not to ship off the ON or elsewhere.

A cynic might say that the whole "energy corridor" message is meant to deflect from where the NDP's climate message is particularly weak: pipelines. While they are clear about Trans Mountain, they are far from clear on other pipelines and fossil fuel infrastructure (and I can't see a world where they wouldn't support BC's disastrous LNG pipeline projects, while the Greens are clear that they wouldn't approve any additional fossil fuel infrastructure at all).
posted by ssg at 4:03 PM on September 27 [4 favorites]


Canadians just want another option [22 Minutes]
posted by clawsoon at 6:08 PM on September 27 [1 favorite]




Ghostinthemachine I vaguely remember that Trudeau's excuse was that he couldn't get a consensus on what form of proportional representation -- the Liberals wanted Single Transferable Vote, and the NDP and Greens wanted direct representation by pop. I don't think the Cons wanted it at all.

I get this -- the Liberals would be the default second or third choice for all left of centre parties under STV, so they'd wind up with a bulletproof majority and the small parties would be even more shut out. But directly proportional representation ends in coalition governments, often steered by the more radical smaller parties -- great if it's the NDP pushing Pearson on Medicare, lousy if it's Maxine Bernier propping up the Cons.

i still think the solution is to mix the two in the two chambers: STV for the commons and direct proportional representation in the Senate. You'd still have geographic representation in the Commons, and possibly even more votes cast for the NDP and the Greens. And the direct proportional thing would do wonders for the Senate, which is now pretty useless: remove all the sitting senators and change the chamber to seat 100 senators. Senators would be seated according to the national percentage of the first choices on the STV ballot: in order to get a senator, a party must get at least 1% in the first ballot, and each party seats as many senators as their percentage of the vote. Every party would publish their list of possible senators, so on the first choice on the ballot you'd literally be voting both for a party and for a set of particular people. You'd probably get a mess of new parties, and you'd get loud and opinionated debate and coalition building in the Senate, plus (probably) a fair amount of bills returned to the House. But it would work without derailing anything, and could make the Senate matter again.
posted by jrochest at 10:56 PM on September 27 [4 favorites]


"I wasn't joking." Jagmeet Singh doubles down on Trump impeachment comments.
posted by clawsoon at 6:36 AM on September 28 [1 favorite]


Mitheral: JFC the tax "burden" in Canada is not onerous. And a tax credit to transit users is like pointing and laughing at poor people.

Andrew Scheer Pledges Tax Cut To The Environment - "We believe that the environment is suffering under the same Liberal tax burden affecting all hard-working Canadians. We know that the environment is struggling to keep species from going extinct, and we know that the best way to help the environment is to get the government out of its way." [satire]
posted by clawsoon at 6:40 AM on September 28 [2 favorites]


I like the clean energy corridor idea.

I think it's a goal that may be more aspirational than possible. I've been involved in many environmental assessment processes, and these corridors are always, by far, the most difficult. Species at risk/endangered species as well as First Nations and Metis treaties, rights of title and rights to accommodation are enormously challenging to navigate. The new EA act is supposed to codify the new tests placed on government and proponents by the recent BC Superior Court decisions (one for Northern Gateway and waiting on the third for TMX), but it's not fully tested in court yet. So the rules aren't clear yet.

BTW, most of the narratives about EAs and the new laws in the press are wrong, especially those coming from Alberta and the Conservatives. They misconstrue or worse interpret in bad faith the text of the legislation, while constructing elaborate conspiracies to back them up. The new law is what it is, and can always be improved, but it's constructed to primarily address the deficiencies as indicated by the courts in the past decade. At least that's the government's intent as I understand it.

I'd think this would be at least a decade to do, if not longer. Not to say it might not be worth doing, but it will be a major challenge, on the same order as constitutional changes. Indeed, it might require some constitutional changes, particularly in treaties and land-settlements.
posted by bonehead at 9:13 AM on September 28 [2 favorites]


Trudeau's backslide on electoral reform made me ragingly angry. While it is now framed that he detoured because it would be 'divisive', at the time of the decision he said that the Parliamentary Committee report didn't state what the preferred new style of voting should be. Recommending a single new voting style was not in the stated instructions to the Committee.

It is clear that Proportional Representation would not deliver Liberal majorities (where Single Transferable Vote would have), and he gambled that he could secure another majority with First Past the Post. A person who truly stood for the principles Trudeau espoused would have put country over party. This move was the canary in the coal mine for Trudeau's true governing style.

My take on this is that Trudeau's lack of political experience has made his self-interested political manoeuvring more blatant than it might have been with a more seasoned politician. Colour me disappointed and disillusioned.
posted by Sauter Vaguely at 11:03 AM on September 28 [12 favorites]


Exactly! It makes me sick to hear all the yelling about how we have to vote Liberal to avoid a Conservative government, when the only reason we are in this situation at all is because Trudeau blatantly lied (he said 2015 will be the last election under first-past-the-post and then set up a system that he knew wouldn't give him the result he wanted so he could just scrap the whole thing). Will we ever get electoral reform if we vote for a party that promises it, they don't deliver and we just keep voting for them?
posted by ssg at 11:20 AM on September 28 [5 favorites]


who cares where the oil comes from really

Us. It should ideally come from us:
  • We make royalty money off of it (all of us, not just Alberta).
  • More Canadian labour is involved (and to Canadian standards)
  • Remediation is done to Canadian standards
  • Nobody is starting wars over this oil
I think the reason oil has declined in price compared to 5 years ago is because of the US fracking boom, not because consumption has declined (in fact it has increased). I mean I WANT us to use less oil, but if there's oil to be bought and sold then I don't see why I wouldn't want it to come from Canada. I can't pretend that not selling our oil is going to do anything for the world other than make us poorer, while we continue to burn ever increasing amounts of it.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 5:46 PM on September 28 [1 favorite]


Our oil - the tar sands in particular, is so expensive to get to, problematic to retrieve and it’s not going anywhere.

I agree I’d like us to use less, and on some level I absolutely get the idea that domestic production helps more Canadians than foreign consumption does.... I just can’t help but think that those reserves represent so much entropy. So much complex organic chemistry that very well may be so valuable (and less ugly and terrible and damaging to get to) in a generation. It just feels like we are going to be so sad that we just burnt it. Some of the most expensive petroleum on the world that was locked away so we would have to think twice before digging it up... and we just burnt it.

In a country with space, sunshine, wind, world leading commercial nuclear. And power lines do have logistical issues but they don’t rollover, derail or spill on the beach.
posted by mce at 6:42 AM on September 29 [2 favorites]


So #defundCBC is trending on twitter and I can't figure out if it's because realitity has a liberal bias or bots are whipping things up. Maybe both. Hilariously many of the tweets are calling for private news services to hire specific (conservative leaning) journalists and then shut down the CBC. The cognitive dissonance is strong with these people.
posted by Mitheral at 7:44 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


Our oil - the tar sands in particular, is so expensive to get to, problematic to retrieve and it’s not going anywhere.

Problematic is too vague to argue one way or the other, compared to other sources of oil, but it's absolutely not too expensive to get to. The reason it's barely profitable is that it sells for a discount - most of it goes to a single buyer in the US Midwest, and we have to sell it on their terms. Even so, we're still extracting around 3 million barrels per day, about 2x what Canada consumes.

Oil sands extraction is profitable around $40/barrel. Western Canada Select is hovering around $40, but compare to benchmark prices of $55-$60.

Keystone XL (to the gulf cost) will help, but pipelines to the west would help even more. The Trans Mountain expansion opens us up to California and markets in Asia. This is why federal investment by the Liberals made good economic sense.

Rail and refineries help too, but those solutions have problems of their own.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 8:52 AM on September 29


That said, I would love to see carbon neutral electricity production across the country. BC and Quebec are already there with hydro power. Alberta has shuttered coal plants, and is still on track to stop using coal (switching to mainly natural gas) by 2030, but that's not nearly good enough.
posted by Pruitt-Igoe at 9:03 AM on September 29


Lately I've been thinking about Alberta power like my grandparents thought about potatoes and grain. Wind and solar, like potatoes, are tricky to store and transport, so they end up being used locally. The potato garden is not for export. Oil, like grain, stores and transports well, so it ends up getting shipped all over the world.

This is an imperfect analogy, but I still like it.
posted by clawsoon at 10:00 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


Pruitt-Igoe: Oil sands extraction is profitable around $40/barrel.

That's with the caveat that most of the pollution costs of tarsands production is externalized. Northern Alberta (and the world) will never be the same. The amount of royalties that you'd have to take out of the price of tarsands production to return northern Alberta to what it was would push the price of extraction - the real price of extraction - a lot higher than the nominal price of extraction.
posted by clawsoon at 10:06 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


Half of my family has lived in northern Alberta so long that tracing them isn't done done by the family hobbyist genealogist, it's done by anthropologists and archeologists. It means something to go and see the what tar sands extraction means.

On a global scale it is expensive extraction and it's technically challenging which is why it's still there to be extracted. My point was that, perhaps, these should be arguments for considering the opportunity costs of production now; once dug a hole will never be undue, once burnt a hydrocarbon will never be useful for anything else ever again.

Oh yeah and it's an ecological liability.

We may well come (sooner rather than later) to a point where we need those and the old beaches and deltas are under water again and the current offshore installations aren't accessible or maintainable. We might needs those for something other than commodity resale. And the energy production and distribution conversation is changing.

For all the other reasons we talk about plans and requirements for a greener future I add the concern that I don't really want to incentivize the last buggy-whip manufactures to produce faster. Not if, to torture a metaphor, they could be aiming to be the next upholsterer or tire maker or mechanic.

Market forces are far more reliable when there's market transparency.
posted by mce at 11:16 AM on September 29 [8 favorites]


Green Party Leader Elizabeth May says Alberta's oil workers won't be left out under her party's plan to transition the country's fossil fuel industry to sustainable energy.

"Alberta will remain an energy superpower, but it will be a superpower in geothermal and solar and wind,"

posted by ODiV at 8:42 AM on September 30 [1 favorite]


I mean it seems a little "cart before the horse" to talk about what the Greens will do when they're in charge, but I like that someone is pushing in this direction.
posted by ODiV at 8:46 AM on September 30


With a minority government, the Greens might be more in charge than you'd expect. How many Green members did it take to drive the agenda with the NDP government in BC?
posted by clawsoon at 10:22 AM on September 30


It's important to realize how little leverage junior partners really have though. I don't think the Greens have really changed the NDP policy in BC much at all. They still haven't come around on plans for emission targets. The LNG terminal went ahead, so on and so forth.

A minority coalition partner has to choose to play their one card to cause the government to fall or to continue to be one voice of many at the cabinet table. Not to say they can't have wins some of the time, but they have to be willing to go along most of the time to have any say at all.
posted by bonehead at 10:31 AM on September 30


And as the Lib Dems in the UK found out, sometimes the minority partner gets to be the scapegoat.
posted by bonehead at 10:32 AM on September 30


Has there ever been a coalition government in Canada?

If there were a minority government, another party might prop it up, but they certainly wouldn't be allowed in to form a coalition. And not that minority governments can and have survived with official propping -- the other parties vote against the government bills, but it just so happens that if the government is 8 seats short of a majority, 9 MPs from the other parities will be in the bathroom, home sick, away at their consituency etc. etc. when bills are voted on. Thus the bill passes without support from other parties.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 10:36 AM on September 30


The current NDP-Green one in BC is a formal coalition, yes.
posted by bonehead at 10:44 AM on September 30 [1 favorite]


Since Confederation, the only coalition government at the federal level was the one elected in 1917.
posted by Chrysostom at 10:47 AM on September 30 [1 favorite]


Thanks...I was thinking of federal, but only because I just didn't consider the provincial possibility.
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 10:48 AM on September 30


The current NDP-Green one in BC is a formal coalition, yes.

It is not a coalition in the normal definition of the word. A coalition would be governing together, usually having members of both parties in cabinet, voting together, and so on, essentially acting as one party, at least in the legislature.

The NDP is a minority government, supported by the Greens on confidence votes only.
posted by ssg at 1:08 PM on September 30


It's a bit more than that. The agreement has four main pillars the NDP have to consult the Green party on.
posted by bonehead at 2:12 PM on September 30


Sure, but a minority government with consultation is not at all the same thing as a coalition government. They even specifically said it wasn't a coalition when they announced the agreement.
posted by ssg at 2:20 PM on September 30 [1 favorite]


For a 15% credit to be worth $1000 the hypothetical family of four would need to be spending $6,666 annually on transit passes or $555.55 monthly.

This is easy to do on GO Transit. My GO Train commute is relatively short (about 25 mins long) and costs me about $240 a month. There are no monthly passes.
posted by emeiji at 9:16 PM on September 30


The credit is only for monthly/weekly passes and electronic fare cards (when used for an extended period). If you buying a ticket daily Go Train might not qualify.

At any rate I didn't argue it would be impossible, just that the quoted benefit would only apply to a very small number of nuclear families. And was grossly unfair, natch, to poor transit users. It's typical for campaign promises to put the absolute best face on a benefit but it is rare for a promise to so blatantly stick it to poor people by subsidising a service they use heavily while making it hard for them to take advantage of.
posted by Mitheral at 6:05 AM on October 1 [1 favorite]


Scheer's big promise in the past couple of days is a 25% cut to foreign aid. Seems like an entirely cynical attempt to pull some voters back from the PPC.
posted by clawsoon at 5:58 AM on October 2


French language debate tonight, sans Elizabeth May and Maxime Bernier. Anybody have a link to watch with translation for us unilinguals?
posted by clawsoon at 8:34 AM on October 2


Somewhere Mordecai Richler takes a long draw on a cigarette, and as he exhales, quietly says, "This is wholly unsurprising."

Video of NDP leader Jagmeet Singh being confronted at Montreal's Atwater Market by someone who advised him that he should remove his turban.

Singh was greeting shoppers as he strolled through Atwater Market on Wednesday morning when he was approached by a man who gave him some unsolicited advice about his appearance.

“You know what?” the man whispered to Singh. “You should cut your turban off and [inaudible] you look like a Canadian.”

“Oh, I think Canadians look like all sorts of people. That’s the beauty of Canada,” Singh politely responded with a smile.

The man mumbled something else to Singh, to which the politician responded “I don’t agree, sir.”

“In Rome you do what the Romans do,” the man continued.


Jagmeet Singh confronted by man who told him to 'cut off' turban

*coughs*

By "do what the Romans do," did he mean speak Latin instead of French?
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:24 PM on October 2 [1 favorite]


French language debate tonight, sans Elizabeth May and Maxime Bernier. Anybody have a link to watch with translation for us unilinguals?

According to Justin Ling:

(Do tune in tomorrow night, at 8, for the TVA face-a-face debate, arguably the best format of all the election debates. Don't speak french? Don't worry, I'll be livetweeting it.)

posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:25 PM on October 2 [2 favorites]


Ah. Also...

How to watch the TVA debate in French or English:

The debate will air tonight from 8 p.m. to 10 p.m. EDT. Viewers can find it, broadcast in French, on TVA and LCN. The debate will also broadcast online at tvanouvelles.ca. CPAC will air a replay of the debate, with simultaneous translation into English, on TV and online at 10 p.m. EDT.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 4:21 PM on October 2




Justin Trudeau is sure tweeting a lot right now. He should focus on the debate.

(In today's edition of How To Prove You Don't Write Your Own Tweets...)
posted by clawsoon at 6:33 PM on October 2


What are y'all thoughts on the debate? I had it on the background so alternated between paying and not paying attention. I think Blanchet came off well, I saw no hints of this "goon" attitude he's supposedly known for. Scheer's level of French did him absolutely no favours, and he was just so weridly cagey during the abortion question.

I mostly listen to French debates to dump on the language skills of the Conservative leaders anyway.
posted by invokeuse at 8:25 PM on October 2


Did Blanchet really say to "vote for people who resemble you"?
posted by clawsoon at 5:16 AM on October 3


> Did Blanchet really say to "vote for people who resemble you"?

Maybe. That one threw me for a loop; when I watched it live I definitely heard "ressemblent" (resemble) but then on the replay I heard "rassemblent" (bring together). My ear for Québec French is a little rusty, though, and I wonder what the English interpreters chose (for those who watched the dubbed version).
posted by invokeuse at 7:31 AM on October 3 [1 favorite]


CBC has it as:
Blanchet, a native Quebecer, and the leader with the best command of the French language, asked Quebecers to elect more MPs "who resemble you. Who share your values. And who work for your interests, and only for the interests of Quebecers."
posted by clawsoon at 10:06 AM on October 3 [3 favorites]


One benefit of being part of an explicitly racist party is not really suffering in the polls when you say something blatantly racist on TV.
posted by bonehead at 10:56 AM on October 3 [3 favorites]


That one threw me for a loop;

They helpfully tweeted that for you. It is, I assure you, completely racist.

What are y'all thoughts on the debate?

Personally I was underwhelmed but based on their Twitter feed the Conservatives felt that they hit it out of the park.
posted by Ashwagandha at 12:15 PM on October 3 [1 favorite]


Somewhat amusing, in light of Scheer attacking Trudeau for being hypocritical last night - the Globe & Mail is reporting that Scheer holds dual Canada- US citizenship, something he attacked Michaelle Jeane for previously (story is behind the Glob's paywall, so no link).

Response to Conservative claims of Scheer winning the debate has been amusing (personal favourite - "Just a bit tone deaf to claim you won the French language debate in English, non?")

Anyways, I'm a little amazed at how disconnected I feel from this election.
posted by nubs at 3:02 PM on October 3 [1 favorite]


Personally I was underwhelmed but based on their Twitter feed the Conservatives felt that they hit it out of the park.

Somewhere I saw a comment that was something like "Now you're just reminding them that the Expos went away."

On the lighter side...

Dave's not here, man:

He thought he was a candidate for the Marijuana Party. He was wrong.

posted by mandolin conspiracy at 3:03 PM on October 3 [1 favorite]


Have you looked at the Rhino party platform
posted by nubs at 3:15 PM on October 3 [1 favorite]


I can recall a time when the Rhinos didn't have a platform at all. Too formal.

They had a deck instead, as they reasoned, you could always have a friendly beer on a deck.
posted by bonehead at 3:46 PM on October 3 [1 favorite]


I do love that the Rhino Party is running their own Maxine Bernier in Maxine Bernier's riding.
posted by Ashwagandha at 5:12 PM on October 3 [2 favorites]


Vice is all over Scheer's secret dual citizenship - Canada’s Next Prime Minister Could Be an American!!!.
posted by Ashwagandha at 5:16 PM on October 3


Does this count as foreign interference in our election?
posted by nubs at 5:25 PM on October 3


Does this count as foreign interference in our election?

Inverted Ted Cruz?
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 6:36 PM on October 3


The Communist Party of Canada has an ad on CBC Radio right now. Ah, equal airtime...
posted by clawsoon at 6:55 PM on October 3 [1 favorite]


I'm not sure where I am on the dual-citizen issue. On the one hand I don't want the leader of my country, or any high-ranking politician really, to have divided loyalties but on the other our Queen is the queen of a bunch of different countries and is probably more attached to the UK than she is to Canada.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 7:29 PM on October 3


I think it is a non-issue, personally, but the Conservative party has a long history of bashing other politicians for holding dual citizenship so its a big helping of schadenfreude to go with the bitter taste of double standards.
posted by nubs at 8:03 PM on October 3 [2 favorites]


I am sure this Canadian* licensed insurance broker** is extremely qualified*** to be PM.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:13 PM on October 3 [5 favorites]


Everybody following 338Canada?
posted by GhostintheMachine at 3:54 AM on October 4 [1 favorite]


I think it is a non-issue, personally, but the Conservative party has a long history of bashing other politicians for holding dual citizenship so its a big helping of schadenfreude to go with the bitter taste of double standards.

It is not merely the long history of the party doing this (although, oddly, I don’t recall anyone being dismayed at John Turner having been born in the UK) — I think it’s more that Scheer himself is on the record as having questioned Michaëlle Jean’s fitness to be Governor General because of her dual citizenship with France. Oh yes, and don’t the current Tory attack ads on Trudeau revolve around the tagline, “Not as Advertised?”

I understand that Scheer’s damage control today is insisting that no one ever asked. It makes you ponder what other questions we have not yet asked... Being in the GTA, I can easily recollect how Rob Ford insisted, when the crack video came to light, that the months of heated denials were not lies and omissions, but we’re merely because no reporter had asked the right questions. Ah.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 4:03 AM on October 4 [1 favorite]


The CBC tries hard not to be biased, but the delight in announcers' voices when Scheer's hypocrisy was exposed contrasts a bit too clearly with the sadness when Trudeau's hypocrisy was exposed. Good job for trying, CBC, but you've got to work on that neutral affect just a weeee bit more.

Speaking of CBC Radio, Mary Weins is following candidates around once a week. I can't find it now, but last week or a couple of weeks ago she spent time with Renata Ford, wife of the late Rob Ford, who is running for the PPC. One thing I wasn't completely surprised to hear: When Rob Ford famously gave out his phone number and answered every call for help with any issue, he usually left it to his wife to actually answer the phone.
posted by clawsoon at 5:23 AM on October 4 [3 favorites]


Everybody following 338Canada

Er...statisticians who don't know the difference between odds and probability?
posted by If only I had a penguin... at 6:07 AM on October 4


I think it is a non-issue, personally, but the Conservative party has a long history of bashing other politicians for holding dual citizenship so its a big helping of schadenfreude to go with the bitter taste of double standards.

My personal favourite tory double standard of this election (and the last election, too, because they can be hypocritical the same way twice) is how they hit at Mulcair for a lifetime of public service, declaring him a career politician when he had first been elected to office a year later than Stephen Harper. Now they have Andrew Scheer, who has literally never done anything of note other than be in office, because he was first elected at 25 years old.

Being a career politician is not, in my mind, a terrible thing. But in the conservative's mind it is -- unless it is a conservative career politician.
posted by jacquilynne at 6:37 AM on October 4 [2 favorites]


You may have also noticed that all the Tory digs about Trudeau being so young are absent this time around.
posted by clawsoon at 8:06 AM on October 4 [1 favorite]


Trudeau government seeks judicial review in decision to compensate First Nations kids
The Liberal government led by Justin Trudeau is challenging a landmark human rights ruling to compensate apprehended First Nations children harmed by the on-reserve child welfare system.

The Attorney General of Canada filed an application to seek a judicial review with the Federal Court today — just two weeks before the federal election and days before the Oct. 7 deadline for filing an appeal.
Goddammit, man.
posted by clawsoon at 9:53 AM on October 4 [2 favorites]


Maybe the Liberals should roll out a "Just not ready" campaign for Andrew Scheer, not that the original one was successful.
posted by any portmanteau in a storm at 9:53 AM on October 4


You'd have to change it to "Sure not ready" to keep the homophony.
posted by clawsoon at 9:55 AM on October 4 [2 favorites]


The incomparable Sandy Garossino:
A data-based dismantling of Jason Kenney's foreign-funding conspiracy theory
. Nine conservative party / CAPP talking points, refuted.

Euphemisms for oil are so ingrained that the NDP and CPC can both promise a "cross-Canada energy corridor" and we'll either get an HVDC electric grid interlink for wind-solar-hydropower sustainability or a oil pipeline good through the year Vancouver-airport-underwater 2080.
posted by anthill at 3:03 PM on October 4 [5 favorites]


You may have also noticed that all the Tory digs about Trudeau being so young are absent this time around.

IOKIYAT.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 8:24 PM on October 4


Goddammit, man.

QFT.

APTN has done some excellent investigative reporting that make Trudeau and Seamus "I used to be on the tee vee!" O'Regan's decision to fight this even more nefarious:

Death as Expected: Inside a child welfare system where 102 Indigenous kids died over 5 years

Seventy-two Indigenous children connected to child welfare died in northern Ontario, where three Indigenous agencies covering most of the territory were underfunded approximately $400 million over a five-year period.

The number of deaths jumps to 102 Indigenous children when looking at the entire province between 2013 to 2017.


Let's add to that the stunt that Seamus "I used to be on the tee vee!" O'Regan pulled in Grassy Narrows:

During the 1960s, the Dryden pulp and paper mill, operated by Reed Paper, dumped 10 tonnes of mercury into the Wabigoon River that feeds Grassy Narrows and nearby Wabaseemoong (Whitedog) Independent Nations. The potent neurotoxin contaminated the river’s fish and poisoned the people who ate them. The community’s residents developed tremors, slurred speech, impaired hearing, tunnel vision and lost muscle co-ordination. Scientists strongly suspect that old mercury still contaminates the mill site and pollutes the river.

[...]

...new details have emerged about the rift between Grassy Narrows and O’Regan. When the minister visited the reserve in May to talk about a care home deal, O’Regan and an aide met in Turtle’s office with the chief, a local MP, a lawyer representing Grassy and the community’s project manager, Robert Williamson.

Williamson said that during this meeting, when Grassy Narrows officials grew concerned that their vision for the home did not match O’Regan’s, Turtle pulled out a copy of former minister Jane Philpott’s 2017 commitment letter to the First Nation’s former chief. In the letter, Philpott committed to funding a feasibility study of a care home “as well as the construction and operation … once the design work and programming is ready.”

Williamson said O’Regan took the letter, tossed it aside and called it “crap.” O’Regan allegedly said Philpott should not have done this.


Grassy Narrows is the only other place on the planet outside of the eponymous Minamata, Japan, and a few industrial sites in China with an outbreak of Minamata disease on this scale.

I'll be the first one to say that the NDP has been a source of disappointment over and over again, but this is important:

Jagmeet Singh was in Grassy Narrows today. In addition to fully committing to the care home funding for people with mercury poisoning so far denied to Grassy Narrows by the Liberals, when he was talking about ponying up the full amount to fix the drinking water crisis in Indigenous communities across Canada, he was asked by a reporter: "Are you just writing a blank check for Indigenous communities?" to which he replied, "If Toronto had a drinking water problem, if Montreal had a drinking water problem, would you be asking me the same question?"

Good to hear. Allons-y.
posted by mandolin conspiracy at 2:05 PM on October 5 [2 favorites]


Trudeau government seeks judicial review in decision to compensate First Nations kids

Apparently this is standard procedure during "caretaker" governments while parliament is dissolved for elections. The government asks for a judicial review and stay of decision, basically freezing the case until the new government can deal with it how they wish.

We don't know what the official government response will be, but this isn't as bad as it looks.
posted by rocket88 at 10:32 PM on October 5


Civil servants are specifically enjoined about making any decision, even ones that would be otherwise routine during the "caretaker" period to continue with program operations between the writ drop and the sitting of the new Parliament. New contracts often aren't allowed, new hiring is often stopped, and so on. Letter to ministers, which ordinarily must be responded to, will get a "write back when there's a government" sort of answer.

The civil service loses it's mandate to do anything when the government calls an election. It doesn't get it back until the new ministers have their mandates.
posted by bonehead at 10:53 PM on October 5


It would look better if the government hadn't been fighting compensation rulings ever since they got elected:
Eight years later, on Jan. 26, 2016, the tribunal ruled that the federal government knowingly underfunded child welfare and medical services for 165,000 First Nations kids living on reserves and in the Yukon.

The government knew it wasn’t spending enough to meet provincial/territorial standards for care. But it still didn’t provide enough money.

It was ordered to cease its discriminatory practices immediately, as well as reform and broaden the scope of its child welfare services and supports. Compensation for the discrimination was to be decided at a later date.

But the rights tribunal ruling didn’t bring change. The tribunal has issued eight non-compliance orders, to little effect.

While the government was unwilling to equitably fund services for Indigenous children, it was prepared to spend to deny them services. For example, from 2015 to 2018 the feds spent $100,000 in legal fees to avoid paying $6,000 for one First Nations child’s braces. The government eventually settled with the family.
posted by clawsoon at 4:21 AM on October 6 [1 favorite]


The PPC is advocating for elimination of equalization payments. It's a constitutional requirement so good luck with that PPC.
posted by Mitheral at 5:44 AM on October 6 [1 favorite]


A new Canadian election thread.
posted by Chrysostom at 6:50 PM on October 7


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