Wednesday, February 22, 2006

5 O'Clock Shadow

The Liberals announced their Shadow Cabinet today and I guess you can call it an "evening shadow", since the 26 man Tory Cabinet has given birth to a shadow Cabinet of well over 40 individuals. Throw in the helper monkeys and it seems that over 85 Liberals MPs now have tasks; you've got to wonder how the 15 or 20 who got snubbed are feeling right now.

All in all, I like it. Big names in the big portfolios, but almost everyone has been given something new to signify a "new start". Among the Highlights:

Leadership Contenders
Maurizio Bevilacqua - Competitiveness and the New Economy
Joe Volpe - Treasury Board (I'm not sure how wise it was to put "Mr. 100$ Pizza" as the Treasury Board critic)
Belinda Stronach - Transport (from what we hear, it's a very complicated critic portfolio)
Ken Dryden - Health
Scott Brison - Environment
Stephane Dion - Foreign Affairs
Joe Fontana - Science and Research
Carolyn Bennett - Social Development
Denis Corderre - Economic Development
John Godfrey - Intergovernmental Affairs
Dominic LeBlanc - International Trade (him and Heddy get to tag team against Emerson)

The Snub
Michael Ignatieff becomes Geoff Regan's assistant at Human Resources and Skills. So the Liberal Party feels Belinda Stronach is competent enough to run the department but that Michael Ignatieff isn't ready to be its critic. Ouch.

Big Hitters
Jean Lapierre - Industry
Ralph Goodale - House Leader
Irwin Cotler - Public Safety (which puts him up against Stockwell Day)
Ujjal Dosanj - National Defense

Big Promotion
Sue Barnes - Justice
John McCallum - Finance ( good choice)

54 Comments:

  • Why is Colter not Justice critic. He would eat Toews for lunch. Come to think of any one would.

    By Blogger Koby, at 7:39 PM  

  • Why in god's name Ignatieff got snobbed is beyond me. That is the dumbest thing the Liberals could have done, unless they are assuming he'll be too busy campaigning to be effective.

    I just can't believe they'd snub him like that. Who is god's name made these decisions?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:55 PM  

  • With the snub of Ignatieff, I guess we can assume which way the Liberal Party is not going.

    Ignatieff can always strike a deal with the Cons. I wonder if Reynolds is the phone to him right now.

    By Blogger Simon Pole, at 8:01 PM  

  • Three things.

    McCallum - excellent choice.

    Ignatieff snub - why they WOULDN'T want an articulate genius in a major critic position is beyond me. Can you imagine this guy tearing apart Stockie over the inevitable human rights abuses that will be committed with him in charge of CSIS and the RCMP? I salivate to think of it. Apparently Graham doesn't.

    And finally, where the hell is Jim Peterson? McTeague, Telegdi and McKay, but no Peterson? Wha...?

    By Blogger Clear Grit, at 8:14 PM  

  • Would like to have seen Winnipeg's Anita Neville and Raymond Simard in higher profile posts. Tina Keeper needs House experience but watch for her. Not everyone in the west supported the Conservatives.

    David Imrie - dave.imrie@gmail.com

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:16 PM  

  • I'm a Conservative, but I think Graham made a good set of appointments overall. Brison vs. Ambrose on Kyoto will be a good clash (though Brison will have to go against every belief he ever had!). Bennett, Godfrey, Dryden and even Stronach got pretty good roles to build their campaigns. Some new profile for people like Belanger and LeBlanc, who have earned the chance to prove themselves. McCallum as Finance seems a weak choice - he comes of as a slurring, ponderous speaker - the only people who think he's any good are Liberals who are blinded by the resume. Same goes for Cotler, though he's saved by the fact he can go after Stock!

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:18 PM  

  • I don't think Ignatieff was snubbed. He is an inexperienced politician and he needs to prove himself first. Overall, pretty good choices were made.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:27 PM  

  • Clearly the high numbers are to guarantee victory in a streetfight with the Conservative Cabinet.

    I would have put Ignatieff in Foreign Affairs or something like that, but maybe he's just going to be spending a lot of time campaigning.

    McCallum is a good minister, but he tends to come off as a bit slow when speaking (like he's just had a few). I'd have put someone with a bit more oratorical skill there, but he definitely knows the policy issues.

    Dion at Foreign Affairs is clearly an attempt to broaden his experience a bit more; he's already got internal relations and the environment.

    I predicted Wayne Easter at Agriculture, him being a farmer and parliamentary secretary to the last minister. Sad that Shawn Murphy didn't get in.

    I was expecting Tina Keeper to get something in the Heritage field, given her acting background.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 8:31 PM  

  • These are not bad choices at all, however, I too would have liked to see Tina Keeper in Cabinet. After assembling a team that worked very hard to get her elected in Churchill, I think that an associate Critic post would have been well deserved. Simard and Neville's posts are not bad, but I too would have liked to see them at a bit higher level of Cabinet. It's unfortunate, but Manitoba really does kind of get blipped over sometimes.

    By Anonymous Mademoiselle Becky, at 8:32 PM  

  • Whoops, I meant shadow cabinet. I'm fighting a sinus cold and only came out to the Library to get my daily dose of politics.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:34 PM  

  • Dosanj in Defence is probably the worst choice. For crying out loud, we're making the largest increase in military spending and force capability in 30 years.

    You'd think maybe someone who _has_ a clue and not someone who when the word "military" comes up the first thing he thinks of is placards and an upside down VW logo.

    Stupid choice.

    Cheers,
    lance

    By Blogger lance, at 8:49 PM  

  • I thought Defence would go to Keith Martin, since he was Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister at one point.

    The perfect Defence Critic for the Liberals would be Colin Kenny, but he's a Senator, sadly.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 8:50 PM  

  • Question: Do shadow cabinet and the assistants get extra wages for these rules? Do they get extra staff.

    If yes, who pays the extra wages? The taxpayer?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:33 PM  

  • No, they're just ordinary MPs. Only the Opposition leaders get extra pay.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 9:51 PM  

  • Bluegrit,

    Could it be that Peterson excluded himself because he intends to retire before the next election? Perhaps he intends to go when Graham does once a new leader is elected and needs a riding to run in (assuming they don't already have a seat).

    By Blogger Rhetoric, at 9:56 PM  

  • Could be Ignatieff also requested a light load for the first session -- being both a rookie and potential leadership hopeful, he is likely to have a lot of studying the house and travelling on his schedule.
    I'd agree with the question of Dosanjh in defence; Martin would have been a good fit, while Savage would have done a good job too. I'd have maybe even traded Dosanjh and Brison's roles.

    By Anonymous vancouverdan, at 10:09 PM  

  • Liberal Party = Bloc Toronto-Montreal

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:16 PM  

  • I don't know why CalgaryGrit didn't read more about the announcement before jumping into conclusion.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20060222.wshadow0222/BNStory/National/home

    Ignatieff was not snubbed.

    "Fresh faces to the party were intentionally not assigned critics' roles, according to a party spokeswoman, although rumoured Liberal leadership candidate and Harvard scholar Michael Ignatieff will assume an associate's role under Human Resources and Skills critic Geoff Regan."

    That doesn't sound like a snub to me, if anything, it's a nod.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:01 PM  

  • [i]Liberal Party = Bloc Toronto-Montreal[/i]

    Bloc Toronto-Montreal-Atlantic Canada-Vancouver-Various Parts of Manitoba-Saskatchewan-Ontario-British Columbia-Territories, thank you very much.

    [i]Why is Colter not Justice critic. He would eat Toews for lunch.[/i]

    Toews isn't kosher.

    By Blogger IslandLiberal, at 11:43 PM  

  • I don't feel Ignatieff was snubbed. He must start at the beginning, like any new MP. Once he proves himself, he can rise from there.

    By Blogger John Murney, at 12:12 AM  

  • Anon; Regardless of how whether it was an experience versus inexperience thing, it sure comes across as a slap in the face to Ignatieff. I mean, Dan McTeague gets a spot, but Iggy gets nothing?

    I'm not sure Ignatieff is ready to be LPC leader, but he's sure ready to handle a critic's portfolio.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 1:07 AM  

  • I think Martin would be a good critic of:

    Ethics - since he has none all he has to do is criticize other politicans who dare do as he did to Canada.

    Finance - after all he wrote every lie in the LIEberal Red Book, and actually believed what he wrote - example: te GST [he promised along with his master that the GST wuld be abolished.] Perhaps he could criticise the Conservitives on lowering the rate - because he dd not think about it for over twelve years.

    Justice - this way he can still try to get the not-with-standing-clause out of the constitution.

    Social Development - he can try to stop the FREE VOTE on the defention of marrage between a man and a woman - I know, touchy subject - but one of his favorites.

    any way, the above is just a thought of where Martin would fit in.

    By Anonymous Clown Party of Canada, at 1:27 AM  

  • Do any of the CPC trolls post with their own profiles? I mean, Joe Calgary actually posts rather than trolls, so he doesn't count. But the "ahahaha" and "lieberal" posters seem to enjoy their privacy for some reason.

    By Anonymous Jason Townsend, at 2:21 AM  

  • People complaining that Ignatieff's been snubbed haven't been reading the Human Rights Professor's books and essays very carefully.

    Creative Conservative quote-miners familiar with Ignatieff's writings (I'm sure they exist) would be able to provide Stockwell Day, Peter MacKay and Gordon O'Connor with any number of withering rebuttals to questions Ignatieff might pose on security, foreign affairs or defence matters.

    Ignatieff challenging Day on biometric identity cards in Question Period? Not very likely, given what the Human Rights Professor has written on the subject on pages 78-79 of The Lesser Evil.

    As an NDP supporter, I think Liberals hoping that Question Period will provide an opportunity for their party to distinguish itself from the Conservatives should thank their lucky stars that Michael Ignatieff has not been given a prominent role in criticizing foreign, defence and security policy.

    After all, Ignatieff is on record as going much farther than Stephen Harper in supporting the UN-Charter-shredding principle of pre-emptive war.

    Don't believe me? Read pages 162-167 of The Lesser Evil.

    Again, I'm biased. But it's beyond me why any 'liberal' would support for leader someone who has clearly and repeatedly defended--in print--positions lying outside the norms of international law.

    What can you be thinking?

    By Blogger Stephen, at 2:30 AM  

  • Since most people won't have the opportunity to go out and buy a copy of The Lesser Evil, I thought it might be fair to actually show at least one of the Ignatieff passages that Stephen is refering to. Regarding identity cards On pages 78-79:

    "Identity cards, and identity systems using biometric identifiers, are rapidly becoming mandatory for citizens in liberal democracies, and while civil libertarians have objected, it seems inevitable that their use will spread. The United Kingdom has recently announced that it will gradually introduce a national identity card system making use of the latest biometric technology. Carrying these cards will become mandatory, first for all registered aliens, and then for all citizens. The public interest grounds for such measures are clear. Law-abiding citizens want foolproof ways to ensure that their bona fides are accepted at security points. They will want such systems because more accurate identification allows authorities to target searches more accurately. Greater accuracy enhances liberty because it reduces the likelihood of detention based on mistaken identity."

    The problems with identity cards are serious, however. Any centralized data collection system is open to penetration by terrorists themselves, and to abuse by overzealous government departments. The critical challenge appers to be to set up digital fire walls between discrete sets of data, so that access is limited to those who have legal authority to view them. The major administrative problem is to guarantee the security, integrity, and inviolability of national identity registers. Already, however, it is possible to keep data systems clearly demarcated. Credit card companies should not have access to crminal record data or driver's license data banks and so on. Governments should have strictly limited access to the credit and banking records of citizens. While U.S. civil liberties groups object to national identity card shemes on the grounds that they violate privacy rights and authorize government intrusion, there does seem to be a lesser evil justification for a regulated form of national scheme. The right way to think about these problems is not to object to an identity card system in principle, but to devise legislation which restricts the kinds of data that can be retrieved through a national identity card, and to ensure that it can be accessed exclusively by law enforcement officials. A court with jurisdiction over national data registers could evaluate requests for information as well as complaints of privacy and rights violation. As things already stand, most citizens know that their personal data is available to a host of prying eyes, from the spammers who follow the trail of their Internet transactions to the credit agencies that deny them credit. The problem is that all of these systems appear unregulated or unlicensed by public authority. A national identity card system might provide the legislative point of entry for a regulation of all digital data banks and the creation of a framework of redress for privacy violation."



    I would certainly encourage those of you with any serious level of interest to pick up a copy and actually read the book for yourself. Read it, and read it all the way through, it might not be romantic subject matter but it is courageous and thought-provoking. AND, especially read pages 162-167! I myself am moving backwards through Ignatieff's works. I am still not entirely sure if he's ready for the task of being the leader of the Liberal Party, but I sure wish more liberals would be willing to judge him on his works instead of on how somebody else incorrectly summarizes his works.

    By Blogger Senator Catalyst, at 3:43 AM  

  • They might be thinking people should be sure to check those citations rather than accept your just somewhat biased interpretation of Ignatieff's positions. The NDP have already shown in the Etobicoke race that they're concerned enough about Ignatieff to smear him relentlessly with distorted travesties like... well, like that.

    On your ID card pages, he lays out the positives and the considerable negatives of ID cards, discusses how the negatives could be mitigated and how they actually need to be mitigated with or without the cards. This is followed by a comment about how hastily enacted legislation like the Patriot Act and C-36 are not nearly as careful about these things as he'd like and are harmful.

    And shocking pages 162-167? Let's do see what raving neoconnery I can find:

    "As a lesser evil, peemptive war should be strictly constrained: it needs to be authorized in conditions of genuinely democratic disclosure; states proposing preemption must make a sincere attempt to secure multilateral support; preemption can be justified only as a last resort, once attempts to disarm states through coercive inspection, diplomatic inducements, and other peaceful means have failed; and, finally, preemption must not leave things worse than before the action was contemplated. If a tyrannical state is overthrown, a democratic regime must be put in place. If military action is taken, it must not trigger a wider war. While these conditions are clear enough in theory, judging whether they have been met depends on two crucially difficult anticipatory judgements: is the thread so real that the risk is justified, and are the future benefits of action likely to outweigh the all too evident short term harms?"

    Wild cowboy Ignatieff. If those are his standards, what are yours? Watch the latest Rwanda happen because all coercive action is always wrong no matter what?

    What do I think? I think I'm pissed off that Ignatieff, simply because he actually has positions on things that everyone else gets a pass on, gets these kinds of intellectually vapid smear jobs done on him. He gets treated like some kind of ID-card advocate just because he's written on them in a non-condemning way even though he's obviously more aware of their dangers and the needs to address them than McLellan or Day will ever be. He gets accused of being a neocon for having proposed robust pro-human rights forward foreign policies when his biggest detractors in the NDP don't have a foreign policy beyond verbose isolationism, which, while laudible compared to Bush, is a recipe for human misery.

    By Anonymous Jason Townsend (So Called Liberal), at 4:03 AM  

  • I am very pleased that Senator Catalyst has replied to my post.

    I would also encourage anyone, Liberal party member or otherwise, to read Ignatieff's books and essays carefully.

    In fact, the very paragraph Senator Catalyst quotes shows one of the essential flaws in Ignatieff's thinking quite clearly: he relies on pious wishes that certain institutions--legal, political, journalistic--will serve as checks against 'lesser evil' excesses, while failing to provide much evidence that he has thought seriously about how those institutions function in the real world.

    For example, on page 164 of The Lesser Evil, Ignatieff argues that citizens must be provided with the real facts before their governments launch (UN-Charter-Shredding) pre-emptive war. The Human Rights Professor solemnly intones, 'Our leaders are under the strictest obligation, inherent in democratic government itself, to provide these facts and to consult our representatives before putting us all in harm's way. Pre-emptive war can be a justified lesser evil only when the case for it is sustained by evidence that would convince free peoples.'

    I ask those of you even remotely familiar with the lead-up to the Iraq war to explain how Michael Ignatieff could have put forward this position--afer the fact, no less--without an almost total dedication to intentional self-delusion.

    Leaving aside the point that the kind of military action he's advocating is illegal, he's quite right to say that our leaders are under the obligation he identifies before they take serious steps.

    They are indeed obligated to provide us and our elected representatives with full information before they commit to offensive military action in our name.

    Hands up everyone who thinks that happened before the Iraq invasion.

    Hands up everyone who thinks that happened before the shift in the Canadian mission in Afghanistan.

    Examples could be multiplied.

    Ignatieff's essays and books on 'Empire Lite' and 'The War on Terror' are full to the brim with suggestions about checks and balances certain institutions should impose against 'lesser evils' like 'coercive interrogation' and 'pre-emptive war.'

    They are, however, so fully divorced from the realities of how such institutions actually function in the real world that they render such suggestions fatuous at best.

    Want to continue the debate about Ignatieff? I'm more than happy. Let's get going.

    By Blogger Stephen, at 4:12 AM  

  • Jason,

    Thanks for making my point with your post.

    The feeble shoulds and musts you cite are prime evidence for why Ignatieff's checks on pre-emptive war are no checks at all.

    Ask yourself: Does Ignatieff outline a convincing standard by which we may judge (ante bellum, of course) that some action will 'not leave things worse than before the action was contemplated'?

    If not, why should we take him seriously, given the Iraq experience (among others)?

    By Blogger Stephen, at 4:23 AM  

  • Why are we beating up on Ignatieff? He has more degrees and experience than all of us I think.

    I couldn't believe he didn't get a cabinet critic job. The man's a genius, well written, well read, and can certainly handle his own. Also, we're acting like a critic job is such huge responsibility and takes up so much time and though. Give me a break we all know thats not true. If Belinda could go from zero experience to Giant Cabinet Portfolio, I can't imagine why a world renowned Professor couldn't handle a critic's job.

    Ignatieff was snubbed and it was a dumb decision. Shows how screwed up our party still is. Dosanj... defence? Seriously what is going on in the minds of the back room liberals!

    By Blogger Riley Hennessey, at 9:34 AM  

  • David Imrie,

    Anita Neville and Raymond Simard deserve what they got. They are both useless MP's in need of taking retirment.

    With Alcock going down in flames, Keeper is now the sole hope of the Manitoba Liberals in parliment to rebuild a solid base in the upcoming elections.

    Have you ever actually heard Neville or Simard speak? Simard is barely literate, and Neville while better than Simard is notihng to write home about.

    If they don't retire before the next election I can assure you that a lot of Liberals in Manitoba will be fighting to make sure they lose nomination meetings.

    By Anonymous Manitoba Liberal, at 10:24 AM  

  • Ignatieff's snub...honestly, I am not sure it was a snub. As others have noted, it gives him a chance to familiarize himself with the house and liberal policies. There is no need to rush him into a critic's role. That said, what does that say about our party when they have given all of the critic positions- with a few exceptions - to the old faces? I thought the Liberals were trying to recreate themselves and shake off their entitlement complex or are they waiting to do that until after the leadership election.

    By Anonymous Will, at 10:26 AM  

  • The Liberal shadow cabinet sucks, as does the Liberal party.

    How's THAT for trolling. ;)

    By Blogger Toronto Tory, at 11:02 AM  

  • A very interesting discussion about Ignatieff's "snub". I do not think anyone doubts his intelligence but I think it cannot be denied, as evident by the various responses, his writiings are controversial. I think those who are concerned about his writings should not be chastised just because they have concerns about his statements. I can understand both viewpoints. However, all we know about him at this point is what kind of writer and professor he is. We do not know how good of a politician he might be. Thus,giving him a chance to prove himself in a junior role is not really a negative. He could really drag the party into major controversy as a head critic when the opposition parties rightly or wrongly, start quoting his writings.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:22 AM  

  • islandliberal said:

    Toews isn't kosher

    But that depends how we kill him, doesn't it?

    By Blogger Tybalt, at 11:45 AM  

  • I'd reccomend anyone taking Stephen's criticisms seriously simply read the Lesser Evil, and I'd suggest Stephen do so also, only this time, more slowly.

    I'm really at a loss here to understand how you're criticizing the man by bemoaning the fact that others don't adhere to standards he suggests. "He says the public must be clearly informed of the consequences of action, and that hasn't happened!" "Checks on irresponsible government action that he wants don't exist right now!" Well, clearly, he failed in his role as leader of the US and Canadian governments, didn't he? Or, maybe we'd just be better off if he was making that decision? Or insisting that the government did, whilst in opposition?

    And, purely as a rhetorical suggestion, Steve, you might want to vary the "un-shredding" and "human rights professor" repetition. I don't know what audience that works great on, but I doubt it's this one.

    And on that subject: let's do have a slightly more complex discussion about about the concept of allowing for the scenario of a war without UN permission if (and, let's do recall, only if) it's actually impossible to get it.

    I assmue, having read the UN charter before it was shredded, you're aware that it allows for the threat or use of force in certain circumstances? So what happens if such an occasion arises but a certain undemocratic state on the UNSC (or, for that matter, virtually one of two undemocratic states) happens to have heavy investment in that country, or some national interest precluding UN intervention?

    In other words, simply because Bush has dirtied up the concept of anything else, you'd choose, in 100% of circumstances, whatever the firewalls and safeguards, to only ever do anything with the consensus of China and Russia, even if it means more UNPROFORs and UNAMIRs?

    See, he's answered the question: in the very unlikely event that a moral imperative compels us to consider the use of force, and for some reason we can't, try as we might, get China or Russia on side, should we do nothing? What is your answer? Not being a writer on political ethics, you don't have to say, and nor do most politicians until they blunder into the situation and wing it.

    By Anonymous Jason Townsend, at 12:29 PM  

  • All this Ignatieff grumbling shows exactly why it was wise not to thrust him in the midst of QP as a big dept critic. This obviously brilliant and well-versed intellectual needs the time and opportunity to actually lay out his beliefs if he is willing to make a run for the leadership. As we've seen on this thread -- I can't imagine how low-brow Tory sites are eating this up -- his works and opinions are grist for twisting and misdiagnosis by those who have their own personal axes to grind. Let M. Ignatieff show Canadians what he is made of by talking to campuses and seniors groups and media outlets. The far right and far left would like nothing more than to paint Ignatieff in the same corner as Kerry (an honourable and intelligent presidential candidate who, despite a tremendous record in military and politics, was virtually tainted by the rich Bush right), dooming us to years of Harpo-crit's Bush-lite imitation.

    By Anonymous love, sydney, at 12:37 PM  

  • If I were a re-elected Liberal MP who didn't get a shadow cabinet position and I didn't ask to be left out, I would be looking at leaving the caucus and sitting as an independant. With a minority government I would have more leverage as an independant than I would as an ordinary Liberal back bencher.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:38 PM  

  • To be honest, I wasn't surprised by the Liberal choice for a massive shadow cabinet for several reasons, the primary reason is that the Liberal party believes in centralization of power and big government.

    What we see is two different views of government. The Conservatives wishing to drastically decrease the size of government, and the Liberals wishing to increase the size of it.

    Benefits of this move are that the Liberals will be able to focus their fire more effectively against the smaller Conservative team. On the other hand, Conservatives will be more flexible and will be able to take advantage of synergies between departments.

    All in all this will make the next session interesting.

    By Blogger SouthernOntarioan, at 1:08 PM  

  • In truth, the Liberal shadown cabinet is massive because they think it will prevent their MPs from crossing the floor.

    Which will make it all the more amusing when their "shadow ministers" leave the Liberals en masse.

    By Blogger Toronto Tory, at 2:01 PM  

  • TT, take a look at Southern Ontarioan's post as a guide for better partisan sniping. At least he accuses us of having a particular political vision rather than just calling us poopyheads.

    As for a big shadow cabinet - why not? A cabinet, arguably, benefits from being as trim as possible. But critics? They don't represent a multiplication of portfolios, simply a better ratio of critics to backbenchers.

    By Anonymous Jason Townsend, at 2:49 PM  

  • ER, pardon me, you liberals there.

    Where is the house cleaning?

    I want to see Chretienite criminals cleaned out. Who are the old guard lackeys you are delegating to the back benches?

    How do you expect me, the voter, to see a newer Liberal party worthy of respect and my vote.

    I am not a dogmatic, at all costs, *Rigid Liberal*. The list of 218 scams and rip-offs printed in the January 22nd Toronto Star is still vivid in my mind.

    The NDP hand bill on 400wt. glossy stock outlining the 10 $billion dollars minimum liberal party losses of our revenues is still there, on my kitchen table.

    The Liberal party makes no attempt to refute the NDP national revenues losses claim.

    If none of the Chretienite old guard are swept aside, how do you expect me to vote liberal next time?

    If no liberals are charged with stealing public funds in light of iron-clad evidence of the Gomery report, how do you expect your party to regain any public trust?

    Sorry about the embarrassing questions, but either you plan to rebuild or you plan to fail again! TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 8:05 PM  

  • As a small-c conservative, there are certain Liberals I would vote for in certain circumstances. I like McCallum as Finance critic since he had an office in that Department as Secretary of State for Financial Institutions and the subject is one where good political skills are less weighty next to the resume. I also like Dion as Foreign Affairs critic. But I am disturbed by Dosanjh as Defence critic when Ignatieff could have taken that file. So what if Ignatieff has all sorts of controversial quotes out there. Conservative voters who are not partisan hacks are generally not bothered and would keep their mouths shut for fear of appearing anti-intellectual and small-minded. If the Liberals were bolder about Ignatieff some small-c voters would come over. But keeping a lid on him seems like pandering to the NDP and that will keep us away.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:27 PM  

  • Tony: I say this respectfully, but having checked out your site, I think you're taking a lot of Quebecor-media and pro-Tory sources far, far too uncritically. Who in the Liberal Cabinet do you believe Gomery criticized? Don't base your view on Gomery on the Sun or the Western Standard or stories someone emailed you about the "Libranos;" or at any rate, don't expect Liberals to be able to debate you without first tackling all these underlying assumptions.

    By Anonymous Jason Townsend, at 9:12 PM  

  • Jason, That's like saying it's going to be sunny, otherwise it may be cloudy and rain.

    Could you offer anything at all specific? I have. TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 1:18 AM  

  • PS, I'm not at all pleased with the Western Standard.

    Ezra is gambling with Canadian lives and I hope an MP visits our guys in Afghanistan and Harper stays here at the helm. TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 1:21 AM  

  • Jason, did you read the post at all? The $10 $billion figure of Liberal thefts of revenues comes from the Liberal party's friends, the NDP.

    They would be offended by your label of Quebecor media and pro-Tory sources. TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 4:00 AM  

  • The NDP is a lot of things, but the Liberals' friends? Hardly.

    If you form your view of any one of the political parties based chiefly on the political attacks of its enemies, then you won't be happy with any of them. Your web page basically seems Conservative, as do the premises by which you judge the Liberals (for example, equating all Chretien era liberals with criminals.)

    By Anonymous Jason Townsend, at 4:28 PM  

  • "Ignatieff's snub...honestly, I am not sure it was a snub. As others have noted, it gives him a chance to familiarize himself with the house and liberal policies."

    So he's not capable of being a Parliamentary critic (and I accept those caveats) but he is capable of being party Leader and Prime Minister because?...

    By Blogger deaner, at 5:42 PM  

  • Jason, I have 7 blogsites and one website. My politics are confusing, I admit.

    Nothing is entirely as it seems. Did I hear you say Uncle yet, or do you have any opposition at all? TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 7:28 PM  

  • Ignatieff was snubbed, plain and simple. Whether this is indicative that they don't think he's ready for prime-time or they feel that moving leftward is the way to go to counter Harper is very much up for debate. Whatever the reason, to have someone who can defend his positions and not blow in the wind or soften on them, and leave them sitting on the outside is a major error on the Liberals' part. If they've got a position on defence & security issues that he agrees with, he's the one I'd want to stand up and defend it; why on earth would you want Ujjal Dosanjh, a former NDP premier, to be handling those kinds of questions instead of Ignatieff? It boggles the mind.

    By Blogger RGM, at 2:03 PM  

  • OK, Manitoba Liberal, I've lived in the 'Peg five years, been through two federal elections and one provincial. How come Manitoba's Provinical Grits have not been a force since the days of Sharon Carstairs? If anyone could turn off listeners with a voice, it was her. I'm not claiming Anita Neville to be leadership material, but, hey, she's been re-elected by solid margins in the past two elections. No, I've never heard Simard speak and there us little doubt that much of his support holds over from the days of the late Ron Duhamel. But he earned his seat in a by-election and in two difficult general elections since that time.

    I will agree that Tina Keeper's optics and speaking style will help. What seems to be the issue is local organization. The provincial Grits became Official Opposition in Manitoba thanks to a divided NDP vote in 1988, and lingering hostility against Mulroney for the CF-18 decision. The federal party rebounded in the '88 federal election and took all but one 'Peg area seat in '93, plus a few rural ones. Jon Gerrard's policies are solid and it's a shame we can't get at least one more MLA in the Leg to get party status.

    You e-mail me off group if you have any questions. Thanks.

    Dave Imrie - dave.imrie@gmail.com

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:08 PM  

  • Dave Imeri, It hurts me to see you flail about trying to focus on a potential Liberal leader.

    There isn't any !

    Here's the winning formula.

    Martin returns as leader. Brilliant people are capable of changing their minds.

    Martin's words are worshipped by the MSM, so Martin does a house-cleaning. Demotes all those who are the Chretionite croneys and the major ADscam artists.

    Martin, with his freshly purified cabinet, marches forward faulting Harper policies,[every word echoed in the MSM], and espousing the new whistleBlower purity of the party.

    Along the way, Martin can bring his idea of the next Liberal leader into public focus.

    This is the obvious route to take, yet I am not a member of any party. TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 2:41 PM  

  • PS. Martin had a setback, but he isn't really a quitter, is he?
    TG

    By Blogger TonyGuitar, at 2:42 PM  

  • Oh my god, there's a lot of useful information in this post!

    By Anonymous www.lamparas.biz, at 5:24 AM  

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