Friday, November 23, 2007

Orchard Jumps In

David Orchard has tossed his toque into what I imagine will be a hotly contested Liberal nomination for Gary Merasty's old seat. Not a huge surprise considering he played a major role in delivering the Liberal leadership to Dion.

While I could restate my view of Orchard, I'm not in the mood to read through the swarm of angry e-mails from his army of zombie followers this would generate. So, instead, I'll bite my tongue on this one.


Hat Tip: Grumpy Voter

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35 Comments:

  • “I'm not in the mood to read through the swarm of angry e-mails from his army of zombie followers”

    You can smear disdain on David Orchard. He is opinionated and controversial. However, you shouldn’t write off his supporters who are passionate Canadians.

    There is a difference between slamming the heavyweights and stepping on the little people. One day, you might understand the difference.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 1:40 AM  

  • Thanks for the Tip o' the Hat...

    I work on the same block as Orchard's little "Campaign for Canada" office in Saskatoon. I'm gonna take a snapshot of it (hopefully) and post it to my blog. I have never once seen it open for whatever kind of business that a "Campaign for Canada" office in Saskatoon would do.

    Anyway, I don't quite know what to make of David Orchard, frankly. While I respect his many supporters right to support their guy, I have to wonder if Orchard got next to no mileage being a Conservative, why would he think he'd any better as a Liberal. Moreover, the TON of stuff on his website is completely opposite of what the Liberal party is supposed to be about, so let's assume he wins the nomination. Clearly, Stephane Dion is a wise enough man to realize that this guy would be a huge liability in any election campaign - sort of a Liberal Randy White. Does Dion sign Orchard's papers? (God, I hope he doesn't...) If Dion doesn't, well - now we have a nice little PR disaster akin to your average run of the mill Stephen Harper ignoring the will of Tories who supported a candidate who won a nomination fair and square, only to be hammered by his leader.

    No.... I think Liberals should be PUBLICLY distancing themselves from David Orchard, like... how about now?

    By Blogger The Grumpy Voter, at 3:42 AM  

  • RON PAUL...

    By Blogger James McKenzie, at 3:58 AM  

  • I dont agree with a lot of what Orchard has to say, be he is going to deliver us a ton of organizational support and votes come election day.

    Not only does he have huge lists, hes got an army of supporters that do exactly as he says. He was key in getting Dion elected Leader, and he will be key to picking up a few seats in the Prairies next election.

    For this reason, Im not going to criticize the man. Some of his people are eccentric, but Im not going to say that they are bad people. They are good Canadians, and care about the future of this country.

    By Anonymous David Halberstrom, at 4:02 AM  

  • Orchard has never shown the ability to get himself elected to anything. I find the idea that he has coattails able to deliver more seats dubious at best.

    He has enough followers to have influence in small organizations like the former PC party or the Liberals in Saskatchewan. In an election of any kind, his influence is diluted to the point of insignificance.

    By Blogger Reality Bites, at 7:40 AM  

  • I dont agree with a lot of what Orchard has to say, be he is going to deliver us a ton of organizational support and votes come election day.


    And he'll send a ton of voters and money to the Conservatives and NDP on election day too.

    The net effect of any relationship with David Orchard has always been and will always be negative.

    The Liberals need to be gaining favour with the Canadian centre which elects majority governments. Flirting with David Orchard is flirting with the political periphery.

    Additionally he adds nothing to the political mission of the Liberal Party. In fact, his inclusion only makes the purpose of the Liberal Party more blurry to Canadians.

    Finally, is there anyone here that thinks Orchard would win an award for "Most Loyal Liberal Party Member?" Lets not be dumb enough to set ourselves up for a damaging political stunt by Orchard in the unfortunate circumstance that he gets the nomination and is elected to Parliament.

    Sorry, but I'm a big no on Orchard. However, I'm comforted by the fact that his electoral track record success resembles the Toronto Maple Leafs Stanley Cup success over the last 39 years (for those of you who aren't hockey fans, search Wikipedia for "Longest all-time Stanley Cup Finals droughts).

    By Anonymous Rob C, at 9:53 AM  

  • I'm not in the mood to read through the swarm of angry e-mails from his army of zombie followers this would generate.

    I believe in the blogosphere world, it is called "getting Repo'd."

    By Anonymous the anonymous green, at 11:57 AM  

  • I keep hearing this cant that Orchard has the great huge organizational support and can deliver them and huge swaths of votes, and that he was a big part of Dion becoming leader.

    I've never seen a scrap of evidence of any of it.

    He had nothing to do with Dion becoming leader. Dion was fourth on the first ballot with 18% of Liberal support and only 16% of elected delegates. He was, what?, 5th in Saskatchewan?

    More fundamentally, let's suppose Orchard could bring some votes over, haven't we learned the lesson yet? Grabbing theoretical votes just for the sake of votes and getting office is the problem, not the solution. You don't reach out to separatists and quasi-separatists just to get a few more seats and hold on to power.

    You have to stand for something and let the votes come to you. Orchard was a desperation cry for the Dion campaign which was, at the time, not getting much traction. Maybe the good news of an endorsement helped, but it sure didn't propel him into 4th place and it sure didn't help him win the leadership.

    By Blogger Cerberus, at 12:40 PM  

  • You don't reach out to separatists and quasi-separatists just to get a few more seats and hold on to power.

    Should be:

    You don't reach out to separatists and quasi-separatists just to run as MPs and get a few more seats and hold on to power or others, like we have done. Same for those who hold positions diametrically opposed to what should be some core principles of the party.

    By Blogger Cerberus, at 12:42 PM  

  • Is free trade a core principle of the Liberal party, or something that is just not worth the bother of changing? After all, the Liberals ran against free trade in 1988 and against NAFTA in 1993 (they didn't do anything, but still).

    I'd say that the appropriate analog for free trade and the liberals is gay marriage and the Tories. In that the Tories are supposedly against gay marriage, but have ensured that it was voted on during a time when it would be defeated.

    By Blogger hosertohoosier, at 1:25 PM  

  • Cerberus,

    Orchard has support. Was rumoured to have brought Dion at least 75 delegates. Made a difference as it narrowed his deficit with Kennedy and helped the Dion surge on the convention floor. Not all of them comes from Saskatchewan.

    He has decided to run the Churchill River nomination because of the difficulties in beating Vellacott. Better to use Kelowna as the weapon to beat Harper.

    The key is whether Orchard has traction against the CPC candidate since Jeremy Harrison is now in Regina.

    By Blogger Mushroom, at 1:43 PM  

  • So, mushroom, you are suggesting that Orchard was responsible for about 10% of Dion's elected delegates?

    Well at least that's somewhat more reasonable than the 150 delegates (one fifth!) claimed in his Wikipedia entry.

    By Blogger Cerberus, at 2:10 PM  

  • And let's be clear too: if he got 75 delegates or 150 delegates from across the country, as you suggest, and without any formal organization then his support would have to be even larger than you suggest.

    It doesn't compute. Dion had fairly consistent low support from committed delegates across the country.

    By Blogger Cerberus, at 2:15 PM  

  • Dan, if you're looking to send Orchard a letter, let me know... i've still got the template ;)

    By Blogger BR, at 2:46 PM  

  • Does anyone have any examples of Orchard's social conservatism or is this just the "blogger" standard of journalism where you call people zombies and assign people opinions without having to provide any evidence?

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:02 PM  

  • >>is this just the "blogger" standard of journalism where you call people zombies and assign people opinions without having to provide any evidence<<

    Isn't posting anonymously to the comment section of a blog fairly the same thing?

    By Blogger The Grumpy Voter, at 3:24 PM  

  • anonymous; If you follow the link through to my post last year on Orchard, I link to a bunch of his articles on a wide range of social issues.

    Cerberus; My guess is Orchard probably delivered 30 or 40 delegates to Dion, at the least. There were a bunch of rural Alberta ones where the Orchard vote got Dion a truck load of delegates and he had nothing in Sask before Orchard come on.

    By Blogger calgarygrit, at 4:14 PM  

  • oh thank gawd he's a liberal nut job

    By Blogger Fred -, at 4:23 PM  

  • Dan - that's about what I would have expected. Taking credit for the last delegates that put a candidate over the top is everyone's favourite game, of course. Lots of people contributed to Dion's 16% and 30-40 doesn't translate into owing him that much nor does it translate into anything in a general election.

    By Blogger Cerberus, at 4:43 PM  

  • Dan has mentioned the 30-40 based on western Canada alone.

    There are also pockets of anti-merger Progressive Conservative members sitting in the 416 region of Toronto and elsewhere. They are loyal to Orchard and have been active in the Liberal party.

    How do you define a delegate? Do you include alternates as well? Yes, Orchard's people ran as Dion delegates but how many actually voted at the convention?

    By Blogger Mushroom, at 6:28 PM  

  • Thanks Calgary Grit, all I could find from your links is that he is for boosting military spending and condemned the NATO action in the Balkans. I had heard rumours he was against same sex marriage but I have never read or heard him say anything on the subject although the Ivison article from the Post in the footnotes on his wikipedia entry repeats this as fact so I suppose it must be true.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:22 PM  

  • A lot of guessing games about David Orchard's contribution to Stephane Dion's leadeship campaign, in terms of delegate power. My recommendation stands: read Randy Burton factually correct article from the Dec 07 2006 Star Phoenix, available on www.davidorchard.com (under "Media coverage" and, if you are lucky, at http://www.canada.com/saskatoonstarphoenix/columnists/story.html?id=8bbb9f1c-30b3-43cd-a2fc-4e4e97494d27&p=1
    (The figure of "close to 150" delegates IS correrct.)

    As for the hapless "Grumpy voter" from Saskatoon who passes by David Orchard's office there and claims he has "never once seen it open for whatever kind of business that a 'Campaign for Canada" office in Saskatoon would do," he appears to be unable to try to see whether the door is open or not! Peering through the window obviously reveals very little, but "Grumpy voter" is perfectly willing to draw vast conclusions from it. (For the interested, the office which has existed in that location for fifteen years, is open weekdays 9 to 5, at least, and has been able to offer literature, books and pamphlets, on topics of national interest to Canadians. The window displays current articles, cartoons, posters, books, buttons, etc.

    By Blogger Marjaleena Repo, at 9:55 AM  

  • Time for all the Liberals who gloated over Chandler's victory to feel the heat. :)

    By Anonymous The Invisible Hand, at 10:07 AM  

  • Marjaleena Repo provides a good example of circular logic.

    She states: 'The figure of "close to 150" delegates IS correrct.' and provides her favourite link to a Saskatoon Star Phoenix column as PROOF where she herself is identified as providing info to the column's author. Duhh!

    What's the chances that the author also got the info on supposed DION delegate support from this fellow longtime Saskatoonie:

    Marjaleena Repo
    Fellow Liberal from Saskatoon,
    (Stephane Dion Leadership Campaign's Saskatchewan chair 2006
    David Orchard's campaign manager in two leadership campaigns in the former Progressive Conservative , 1998 and 2003)


    As for the manic support for the ubiquitous organic farmer from Saskatchewan, I am reminded of a quote attributed to P.T. Barnum: "There's a sucker born every minute".

    By Anonymous the anonymous green, at 12:21 PM  

  • "She states: 'The figure of "close to 150" delegates IS correrct.' and provides her favourite link to a Saskatoon Star Phoenix column as PROOF where she herself is identified as providing info to the column's author. Duhh!"

    Take it easy! Marlenna is a visitor to the site.

    Have you taken your medication for the day?

    By Blogger JimTan, at 5:41 PM  

  • Who's Marleena?

    Check the spelling next time you get a mailout from the Campaign for Canada world head office in Saskatoon.

    You seem to be onboard the D.O. wagon train based upon your initial post. So, perhaps you are familiar with his 20 yr old anti-NAFTA claims about Canada's energy commitments to the US (we need to constantly increase the percentage of energy output to the US, proportionality clause, meanwhile Canada freezes in the dark, blah, blah, blah - Gordon Laxer is a good source for this drivel as well - I bet you buy into this also. Don't I recall similar anti-NAFTA stuff from you in the past?).

    So, can you explain this statement in a recent article in the Edmonton Journal:

    There will be enough gas to satisfy Canadian needs despite increased consumption by oilsands plants, the NEB predicted. The pinch will be felt in the United States. Gas exports are forecast to shrink by as much as 40 per cent over the next 10 years.

    http://www.canada.com/edmontonjournal/news/business/story.html?id=529c7fea-39e7-4306-b153-e55b7212036c&k=53362&p=1

    How can they even sugggest this under NAFTA if you believe Orchard's extremely tired arguments? Blasphemy! Does he understand the concept of importing LNG, and understand how commodities are traded? Somehow, I am sceptical that Orchard (and his groupies) really understands international trade issues, formulated it appears while he was riding the turnip truck to the local market.

    His best before date has long expired. Time to face reality, Jimtan and "Marleena".

    Welcome to the real world.

    By Anonymous the anonymous green, at 6:53 PM  

  • He was key in getting Dion elected Leader

    That's worked out well so far...

    By Blogger Möbius, at 7:08 PM  

  • Anonymous Green is too clever by half! I merely referred to the article by Randy Burton so you and others could read the numbers I gave, authoratatively, as I processed the roughly 150 Dion delegates from the Orchard camp. The rumours and guesses on this blog can now stop, for good, one hopes.

    By Blogger Marjaleena Repo, at 7:47 PM  

  • Oh, OK. You were quoting yourself, so that must make it doubly true.

    If I'm "too clever by half", your source is too full by a flush.

    By Anonymous the anonymous green, at 9:16 PM  

  • “His best before date has long expired. Time to face reality, Jimtan and "Marleena".”

    I respect DO, despite the differences in worldview. This is a man who has gained and held the affection and loyalty of others. What have you done?

    Is this anonymous person an idealist or bitterness personified? Are you a patriot or a troublemaker?

    Is David Orchard the Last True Conservative? DO seem like anarchism because he is. His belief system belongs to an earlier age of Canadian self-sufficiency.

    That excludes him from being a center of power. Yet, he persists.

    I respect him a little for being 3rd at the leadership convention. I respect him a lot for not retreating into exile after being betrayed. I respect him for not creating yet another small party.

    He continues to lobby for his beliefs. He has shown a willingness to work with others.

    As a new LPC member myself, I welcome DO and his associates if

    1) They recognize the differences between themselves and the Liberal tradition.
    2) They are willing to work with us on issues of common interests.

    This is the strength of a centralist party. It is able to accommodate many worldviews and focus on important temporal issues.

    By Blogger JimTan, at 12:47 AM  

  • The office is always locked. Moreover, were it open, I wouldn't darken the doors of the place as David Orchard is bad joo-joo for me - probably is for most voters too. Scratch that.. I suspect most voters don't know who he is and that can only be a good thing. Perhaps when he bombs out with the Liberals, the NDP will want him.

    Ohhhh please let that happen! :)

    GO RIDERS!!!

    By Blogger The Grumpy Voter, at 5:47 AM  

  • Geez, for a moment there I was almost feeling all warm and wooly.

    You`re right - he is from a different era. I was thinking more along the lines of a simple shepherd leading his flock. But that`s probably not the first time you`ve herd it.

    By Anonymous the anonymous green, at 7:20 AM  

  • Orchard wouldn't be able to run for the NDP with his opposition to ssm. The Liberals have had far more repugnant members of their caucus and he has a hell of a lot more credibility on the environment than Scott Brison. However, I could see how he might not fit in well with the "radical center" of the Liberal party that thinks they are going to attract a grassroots by fighting an election on larger corporate tax cuts and protecting loopholes on income trusts.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:57 AM  

  • nice to see people picking up on something I posted about first....along with the same obscure reference I used in my post....

    By Blogger Sean S., at 10:38 AM  

  • No doubt, the chap is totally fair.

    By Anonymous www.malaga-3d.com, at 2:24 PM  

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