The NDP takes a dangerous Leap to the left

The romance of the Leap Manifesto fails in the face of reality: hard-line socialism defies democracy

The NDP takes a dangerous Leap to the leftAlberta Premier Rachael Notley was “disappointed” when the recent federal NDP convention in Edmonton adopted the Leap Manifesto as a guide to party policy. She should not be alone. The Leap’s anti-hydrocarbon agenda was adopted despite being branded by Notley’s environment minister as a betrayal of the people who voted for the party in Alberta.…

Rachel Notley wise to close off the LEAP chatter

The LEAP Manifesto is a paean to an imaginary world that is, in a counterintuitive way, dismally pessimistic

Rachel Notley wise to close off the LEAP chatterCanada's political pundits are slavering with glee. They're all agog at the opportunity to dive into the perceived spaces between the N, the D and the P – and do what pundits do: speculate, postulate and from time to time, prevaricate. The current object of their affections is the NDP's support of the LEAP Manifesto…

Is the progressive political movement set to stall?

Five areas creating tension within the progressive movement must be resolved

Is the progressive political movement set to stall?Progressive politics is clearly on a roll in Canada. In fact, some pundits question whether it has run out of new places to go. The next few months in federal politics should be telling. New Democrats were just in Edmonton for their federal convention. The Liberals hold their national convention in Winnipeg in May. The…

Federal NDP once again on a path to irrelevance

NDP prepares to jettison its founding vision and sacrifice Alberta workers on the altar of extreme environmentalism

Federal NDP once again on a path to irrelevanceHistory has caught up with the federal New Democratic Party. The third party emerged in the 1960s, at a time when there seemed to be little difference between the Liberals and then-Progressive Conservatives. The democratic socialist alternative stood for everything the two establishment parties did not: the little guy, organized labour, the environment, gender equality…

Fatuous progressive thought simply self-serving

Why are so-called progressive thinkers so afraid of sharing and legitimately debating ideas?

Fatuous progressive thought simply self-servingAt the recent Broadbent Institute conference, progressive icon Gloria Steinem dropped a clanger that rates high among the most fatuous thoughts of this addled decade. “The power of the State,” Steinem opined, “stops at the skin.” Even in this moment of Donald Trump turning political speech into Mad Hatter word balloons, Steinem’s nine-word pronouncement can…

When the ‘facts’ get fractured by the media, nobody wins . . .

News media increasingly less literate on complex issues simply because they no longer have the time to bone up on the basics

When the ‘facts’ get fractured by the media, nobody wins . . .‘Facts’ should be the arbiters of truth. But facts lose their efficacy when they are enslaved to perspectives rarely connected factually to each other. It’s the interplay between ‘facts’ and ‘opinion’ that does a disservice to the facts – and to anyone interested in learning the facts. Witness how the facts lost the credibility battle with…

Justin Trudeau’s vision of Canada lacks substance and clear intent

We should not equate change with progress, but we should expect real leadership from our prime minister

Justin Trudeau’s vision of Canada lacks substance and clear intentJustin Trudeau’s penchant for platitudes masks an unwillingness – or inability – to tell the difference between progress and change. Waggish columnist John Robson observes in the National Post that Trudeau's maiden speech as prime minister to the Davos Economic Forum left out much while not leaving out nearly enough. Our prime minister's oration this…

Let’s plot a path to reasoned political discourse

Many politicians spend most their time responding to constituents who get their information from bloggers with axes to grind

Let’s plot a path to reasoned political discourseWhat’s bugging Bubba, and the old school, Republican and Conservative base in the U.S. and Canada? A superb Ryan Lizza article in the Dec. 14, 2015, New Yorker hits the nail on the head. The piece focuses on the radical Republicans in the U.S. Congress, and their relentless push of the far right political agenda.…

Health care should be modernized, not privatized

Two-tier care and extra-billing being sold to the public as strategies for saving health care

Health care should be modernized, not privatizedNational Medicare Week has just passed, buoyed with optimism as a fresh-faced government takes the reins in Ottawa – elected partly on a promise of renewed federal leadership on health care. Yet these “sunny ways” are overcast by recent developments at the provincial level that entrench and legitimize two-tier care. Saskatchewan has just enacted a…

Canadian conservatives need to pause, regroup

Despite the hype, Canadian conservatism will recover

Canadian conservatives need to pause, regroupPolitics, by nature, is a system of ebbs and flows. Ideological positions pass in and out of vogue with the electorate. Support for certain policy positions, including the size of government, taxes, funding of social services and international affairs, swings frequently on the left-right pendulum. Political parties and leaders are called triumphant warriors in one…