Wednesday, July 24, 2019

My Excellent Summer and the Horror of the Cons

It's been an amazing summer so far in the place where I live. And now that I'm on holiday I've been trying to enjoy every minute.

The blue sky days, the warm breezes, the childhood memories of the days I learned to sail in a far off land.

The lazy afternoons at the island beach where I can lie in the sun, and have the luxury of time to really think about where this country is going.

But sometimes when I do that these days, I have a deep sense of foreboding.

And it's not just the fact that the rising waters of Lake Ontario have submerged about eighty percent of the sand on this beach.

Or that just a few days ago it felt like 43 degrees in the shade, and it was too hot to go out.

No, this is what I find troubling.

If an election was held at the time of the survey, the Liberals and Conservatives would each get 32% of committed voter support, followed by the NDP at 16%, the Greens at 11%, and the BQ at 4%. All these numbers are virtually unchanged since our last survey at the end of June.

For while I realize that the trend favours the Liberals, I find it hard to believe that with just three months to go before the election, the climate change denier, racist, misogynistic, and homophobic Andrew Scheer still has a chance of becoming Prime Minister.

And that even after the stench of Jason Kenney, and the corruption of Doug Ford, many Canadians would still give Scheer the power to join with them and complete the destruction of this country.

Even though, no thanks to them, it's so admired all over the world.

It's hard to believe that people could be that brutish, or that greedy, or that stupid,  to destroy that work in progress. 

And sometimes I can't help feeling that the Canada I love is doomed.

But then as I walk back from the beach in the late afternoon, and see so many of my favourite flowers blooming.

More butterflies than I have seen for a long time.

And this floating piece of art in the bay called SOS or Save our Swimmers...

Where each orange figure represents more than one million refugees in the world desperately seeking shelter, freedom and safety.

And remind me that we can be proud of this.

Canada admitted the largest number of refugees who were resettled last year and had the second highest rate of refugees who gained citizenship, according to the United Nations Refugee Agency's global report.

Remind me that my beautiful country is far from doomed, still well worth fighting for.

And why I stand with Trudeau 

Who more than any other Canadian politician best represents the country I want to live in.

Holidays can clear the mind, and help some people see the forest for the trees.

But I know what I want and where I'm going...

And I do know this:

The final Battle for Canada is about to begin.

And we are going to win it...  


Jackie Blue said...

There was a different poll from Research Co. that showed the Liberals ahead 34-31. A few of them are showing an upward trend and slight lead with some very important numbers in Ontario. The only salve I can take out of all this is that campaigns do matter, and turnout is the most important factor above all. It was a tight race in 2015 and the Liberals didn't pick up really any traction until late August or September. Granted, a lot of things have changed in four years, the world is much different now, and Trumpism and the cancer of social media hatred has infected the body politic worldwide. Again, I'm really sorry as an American that my country has exported this.

But there's a lot of backstabbing scum more interested in their own self-serving agendas domestically too. (One such assassin is supposedly releasing a slam book just a month before the election.) The only poll that matters is election day, and there's a chance we won't know the outcome until maybe October 29th, if the Orthodox community gets an extension. Nobody saw that coming and it could be the saving grace we need.

All I can say is good luck Canada, you're going to need it. We're still trying to get rid of our Russian asshat and now the U.K. is saddled with theirs. Keep calm and never surrender. #TrudeauMustStay

hinofan said...

Great to hear that Canada has accepted more refugees than any other country, but how many refugees has Canada created through our "America First" foreign policy.
How many Venezuelans have died or fled their country because of punishing US and Canadian sanctions?
Under the militarist Harper government, a Canadian general led the, some say illegal, mission to ostensibly "protect the Libyan people" and enforce a "no fly" zone.How many people have drowned and continue to drown in the Mediterranean because of that ill fated venture, not to mention the hundreds of thousands refugees who are temporary immigrants to EU countries?
The actions of Canadian mining companies in Honduras and other Latin American countries have caused many poor people to be violently forced off their land and many, fleeing to their "holy grail country of the US" are now held in pens at the US southern border concentration camps.
I like Justin Trudeau, he seems a decent guy, but our foreign policy is lockstep with that of the US, thanks to Ms. Freeland and corporate Canada.
He proclaimed a climate emergency after purchasing and promising to double the capacity of a pipeline that will ship "ethical" but toxic "dilbit" to markets in China, which country has had one of its top executives detained on a spurious "rule of law" US/Canada extradition treaty. The same treaty that extradited Marc Emery {the Prince of Pot} and Leonard Peltier who Warren Almand, former Liberal Minister of Justice, admitted was extradited on tainted charges.
I think China will want that "dilbit" as much as they now
want our Canola, Beef and Pork - not at all!
I'm afraid Liberals and Conservatives in Canada are the same Janus faces representing Corporate Canada.
Just like Jackie Blues' Republicans and Democrats.
All Corporate Lackeys!

PeterC said...

It is quite possible this comes down to the flooding of con propaganda onto social media as well as a concerted effort to bury left wing rebutted very deep in the google rankings.

Recently I tried to find a meme about debt to help illuminate the point for something on FB. The kind of meme with things like factual sources. I saw 2-3 pages of Frazier Institute garbage, along with “reporting” from every on-line news source in Canada repeating the same damn lines.

“Trudeau the spender” they proclaim, it’s only when you read the fine line to note that the PMs who had “tough times”, all of them conservative strangely, were removed from the data. FFS, I only hope that smart people continue to fight the good fight.

Jackie Blue said...

Trudeau is a decent guy. He's more than a decent guy; in fact, I think he's a genuine humanitarian, the Fred Rogers of politics, a Gen-X Jimmy Carter. But your continued fixation upon Freeland reads like the kind of "Hillary is a warmonger" Bernie Bro propaganda that led progressives to stay home, and ended up giving us Trump. Because let's be honest here: realistically, your choices for PM are either Justin Rodham Obama or Andrew the Romanian bloodsucker Pence. Not "working class hero" Jaguar BMW Singh or Lizzie Borden Mayhem doing a hatchet job on her own party by bringing along Green-with-envy Kinzilla's axe to grind. The NDP are unelectable and on the verge of insolvency. The Greens are corrupt. The Cons are, well, obvious. The only difference between them and Mad Max's vanity project is that Mad Max says the quiet parts out loud. That leaves the Tru Grits as the only viable and sane option whether people like it, want to admit it, or not.

"Both parties are the same" and "Liberal/Tory same old story" hasn't been the case in forever. Takes awhile for Canada to catch up, but we're at a point now where the party of Eisenhower aka the party of Diefenbaker has reached Borg hive-mind singularity as a cross-border Gingrich-Tea Party NSGOP. You can't compare the LPC (aka DNC) to the party of yellow vests, tiki torches, 4chan trolls, incels, gun hoarders, evangelical extremists, climate deniers, anti-vaxers, conspiracy theorists, QAnon fanatics, BoJo the Clown Brexiteers, anti-intellectual populist austerity proponents whose economic plan consists of scribbling on napkins and subsidizing substance abuse with 99-cent beer on the wall, and above all, the Koch Kleptokrat Klan. If you want to see a scary foreign policy, look up Herrball Harper's IDU. Literally SPECTRE. Ernst Stevero Blowhard stroking his cat really takes his method acting as a Bond villain way too far.

As for JT's climate plan, it's a necessary transition to guard against an "Albexit." We can't kick oil overnight. He has to fund the transition somehow in a country where nobody wants to pay higher taxes. And say what you will about pipelines, at least the Liberals don't shitpost about throwing gays in coal-powered gas chambers. There's a LOT that can be forgiven or overlooked when the alternative is a Dominionist Nazi in short pants with dimples and a shit-eating grin.

There's nothing wrong with Freeland. She's brilliant. Putin hates her, she literally wrote the book on his bagmen (who are, by extension, Trump's) and played a key role in getting the Magnitsky Act into Canada. And she pisses off wannabe-edgy contrarian Islamophobes like Bill Maher who abuse atheism as a cover for bigotry. That should tell you something. She'll make a fine PM when Trudeau has tired of the ridiculous abuse over his last name, his speech impediment, his hair, his socks, his perceived sexual orientation, his alleged Cuban parentage, media-manufactured Emailghazi scandals, etc., that he receives on a daily basis, and returns to his calling as a schoolteacher. Maybe at Jean de Brebeuf in a more tolerant, sans-Legault Quebec, or at Rockville Elementary in an Ontario with no Fords... and Tesla making the school buses.

Right now, we just gotta stop the fascists from unleashing a very unpleasant October surprise.

hinofan said...

Thanks for replying, Langley Blue! ( hope you haven't dispatched and dismembered Noddy! ;)
Thanks for analyzing the Canadian political scene in a nutshell. But you glossed over the "racism triggered by turbans" that has been the Federal NDP's fiscal downfall.
Not sure that the Greens have that much of a tarnished image.
Ms.May IS the most eloquent politician in Canada.
As far as your suggestion that Ms. Freeland would make a great PM and is "brilliant".... Just as Manitoba Brian Pallister is "brilliant" ruling from his perch in Costa Rica, Ms.Freeland would be "brilliant" ruling Canada from her apartment on the Euromaidan next door to her pal Victoria Nuland!
Hillary Clinton's hatchetwoman in Kiev.
My point is Canadians yearn to be "the good guys".
Flying under the radar, we are just an underslung wingtank of US foreign policy, which depends on constant low grade war to keep the armaments industry, the military industrial complex that Ike warned us about, running smoothly.
Unfortunately the generation who grew up with Mutually Assured Destruction (MAD) and the fear of nuclear annihilation are now passing and the new "Winnable Nuclear War" doctrine types are in West Point and the Pentagon.
The world does need Canada, but the vision of Canada as independent of undue US influence and that can't happen without an independent foeign policy and corporate ethos that might have been achieved with MP John McKay's Bill C 300 a few years ago.
Freeland as PM same as Hillary a shoo in for Scheer.
Trump is a deal maker and his own hideous man.Let's hope he can keep Pence, Bolton and other Hawks and Empire defenders at bay, while the edifice, like North American infrastructure,crumbles.
Lets not forget that sanctions are NOT more humane than bombs and that the bomb stockpile keeps growing like those grounded Boeing Max 8s.
I'll probably vote Green and hope for a balance of power, cos the corporations run both the Liberals and Cons.
Where IS Simon?

Anonymous said...

Spot on, hinofan. Thank you.

Anonymous said...

Enjoy your holiday Simon I'm sure you are going to be very busy in the next three months. I too am shocked that Andrew Scheer and the Cons are still in contention, but just a few weeks ago it looked like they were heading for a majority, and now they are not.

Jackie Blue said...

Smart people will. The question remains as to whether there is still a plurality of smart people out there or are we a dying breed. Twitter may not be real life but I just had a glance over at Trudeau's condolence tweet about David Caplan. Sure enough there was a troll invasion slamming him over SNC and China and the budget and other fake shit and wishing he suffers the same fate. Pro-life indeed.

You mention con "flooding" of social media. As regards literal flooding: The behavior of my fellow humans (or replicants, created by human programmers) on these platforms is pushing me in the direction of rooting for the climate crisis. National Geographic reports that the Internet is drowning. I say, good.

Jackie Blue said...

Dude. I don't want to start an argument but the tin foil on your head is baking your cranium in the heat. I haven't dismembered Simon, and I'm not a CIA infiltrator. I've never even been to Canada on vacation. I'm just a Trudeau fan stuck behind the Orange Curtain who wants JT and his team to succeed. Including Freeland. There are many here in the States who root for Trudeau and the Liberals especially considering what we have to put up with. I'm not Langley Blue. I commented here as an anon for about a year, year and a half. Simon advised me to tag my comments with a nickname, so I picked one after a 1970s country ballad about a reclusive woman who "lives her life from inside of her room." Like Casey Kasem, a long-distance dedication from the archives of the pop charts. But I digress.

My Internet history, motivations, and musical interests aside, comparing Freeland to Pallister is abjectly ridiculous. She does not run her campaign from abroad, and domestically, she has no interests in the kind of murderous austerity that he's inflicting on Manitoba. She is the foreign minister, so obviously that means she deals with foreign countries, not all of which are in the best of conditions right now (most are not), but need to be dealt with in a nuanced, adult manner rather than just telling them to fuck off. That's nationalist, populist foolery, unfortunately not confined to the Trumps and Johnsons of the world but their horseshoe equivalents Corbyn and Sanders. Sorry but bothsiderism and purity tests about "neoliberals" only enables fascists to waltz through the split.

If your concern is foreign policy, consider that we could have kept an imperfect compromise with Iran that "neoliberal shill" Obama negotiated and "neoliberal shill" Hillary would have kept. Instead we're going to die in a nuclear holy war because purity ponies stayed home and allowed the evangelicals' preferred candidate to trounce "Crooked Hillary," rip up the deal, move the Israeli embassy to Jerusalem, and get us closer to ushering in the Rapture. Which candidate in Canada is a religious fanatic who also wants to move the Israeli embassy to Jerusalem and turn the book of Revelation into a reality show? Not Trudeau, and Freeland isn't in the running to be PM right now!

As for the spoiler parties, it's blatantly obvious that a vote for Dizzy Maybot is a vote for Wormtongue Kinzilla is a vote for Android Sneer is a vote for Stephen Herpes, period. That's your right in a democracy, but an unwise choice considering the facts. GPC = CPC on a bicycle, and CPC = GOP. Shall I call you Greenie Blue? Bloc Turquoise? Please go back and redo your homework.

hinofan said...

Steve said...

Wallace: Sons of Scotland, I am William Wallace.

Young soldier: William Wallace is 7 feet tall.

Wallace: Yes, I've heard. Kills men by the hundreds, and if he were here he'd consume the English with fireballs from his eyes and bolts of lightning from his arse. I AM William Wallace. And I see a whole army of my countrymen here in defiance of tyranny. You have come to fight as free men, and free men you are. What would you do with that freedom? Will you fight?

Veteran soldier: Fight? Against that? No, we will run; and we will live.

Wallace: Aye, fight and you may die. Run and you'll live -- at least a while. And dying in your beds many years from now, would you be willing to trade all the days from this day to that for one chance, just one chance to come back here and tell our enemies that they may take our lives, but they'll never take our freedom!!!

Wallace and Soldiers: Alba gu bra! (Scotland forever!

brawnfire said...

Oh, boy, do I ever relate to this post of yours.
I've been riding the same emotional wave you describe, this sumnmer.
I make sure to stay on top of the media roil and then retreat most days of the week to RBG (The Royal Botannical Gardens) to walk and read and relax along its lovely grounds and nature trails. It supports me, fuels me, body and soul, and keeps me centered on what matters. Living in the moment and in fine fighting spirit.

Quality of life. Yes, Canadians have it best in the world.
So, it is beyond belief that Canadians would so ungrateful as to reject their good fortune and throw it in the trash heap of conservatism. The Conservative agenda is and always has been to rob that quality of life from the rest of us, for themselves. Thus they always rob health care and education, and your public services in order to fund Corporate welfare and their own Investment portfolios. If Ontarians have discovered they don't like Doug Ford's agenda, I've got news for them. It is typical of any Conservative agenda. He's just a little more blatant, more bull-in-the-china-shop, in going about it.

Jackie Blue said...

You're right Brawnfire, I gotta get out more. (When you said retreating to RBG I thought you meant finding inspiration from the SCOTUS Justice. Which is also helpful, I would add.) Trump here is bad enough but the specter of it looming over Canada makes it worse! Anybody happen to know if Maggie's show is coming to USA anytime soon?

As for why are people attracted to the trash heap of conservatism: I think it's part ungratefulness and part selfishness. Cutting one's nose to spite someone else's face. The people who vote conservative don't care if they end up suffering to benefit the rich as long as someone they don't like suffers too, or suffers worse. Usually that someone is brown, gay, female, disabled, any combination of the above. Social media plays a role now, which like I said is another destructive export the Untied States has inflicted upon the world. It radicalized those neo-Nazi punks, and now the same "pro-life" Cons who want to ban abortion are trolling the families of autistic children in Ontario, with harassing messaging along the lines of why didn't you just exterminate your retarded baby instead of wasting tax dollars on the unfit. Eugenics was where it all started in the 1930s -- first they came for the disabled...

But at least from where the numbers stand, this cruelty appears to be turning people off, and the fog of the February Crisis seems to be lifting. "Competitive" is preferable to where we were then. Now we're at a point where issues and campaigns matter rather than hair and socks and Emailghazi and other BS. New ballgame.

Too early to predict anything but even the polls that have the Cons marginally ahead or tied show the Tru Grits moving up. Léger this morning showed a near-total wipeout of their 10 point lead from June, down to 3. The obscene % in the flyover provinces are what skew the numbers. The ones that matter show a statistical tie. And this is another opt-in Internet panel that tends to lean to the right anyway.

I know the political landscape is very different than it was 4 years ago (and again, I apologize on behalf of my country because we're a bigly part of that). But in Canada's case I always go back to, if July told us anything about October, we'd be reporting on Prime Minister Mulcair.

brawnfire said...

Hi Jackie,
" I gotta get out more."
lol. Yes, yes you do; and I say this, only because it's good for you, ljke it is for me; for anybody.
I'm glad I spelled out my RBG. I can see how one might be mixed up otherwise. Either RBG stands for Good Stuff.
BTW this year's Gardens theme is "Come to your senses." (Never was this more necessary for so many!) Truly, if more of those dissatisfied folks did so, they would!

"why didn't you just exterminate your retarded baby instead of wasting tax dollars on the unfit"
No you can't abort your disabled/unfit baby 'cause Pro-life!
But, Pro-life only until the moment the baby arrives and cries.
I think it's their way of punishing you both.
The Pro-Life stance is a bundle of cognitive dissonance.

lagatta à montréal said...

Frankly, your false comparison with Corbyn and Sanders does not hold water. Guess you don't want National health care.

lagatta à montréal said...

Certainly Canada has a better quality of life than the US, but it still remains lethally car-dependent, and lacking in the rail systems a large country sparsely populated outside large urban centres needs to escape car addiction.

brawnfire said...

Post Script:
To use an analogy, conservatives think of our economic system as a pie. You see those pie charts all over the place; as well, they talk of it that way.
Well, whichever way you slice it, there's only so many. (slices)
You know, they're the one for you and two for me and one for you and three for me type.
A pie is finite in shape and size.
Actually, our economic system is more like a strudel.
It's an art.
You need a god size kitchen table and you need to knead and knead the dough and stretch and stretch it fine enough not to break. Laid out like that, for further sectioning, it's an enormous pastry covering akin to a table cloth.
Liberals, Democrats, progressives, are good at strudel-making.
They've provided to our societies the many benefits we've enjoyed for a very long time.

Steve said...

speaking of the con horror show

Jackie Blue said...

Does anyone follow the Lean Tossup aggregator? I just found them and they seem to be pretty good. ICYMI: Frank Graves at EKOS has a new poll showing a wild swing for the Cons in the span of a week that's causing a lot of people to freak out. The Cons are cheering victory while the Liberals are panicking... and the Greens and NDP are at each other's throats fighting for turd -- I mean third -- place.

But he says not to read too much into it because 1) it's summer, people are paying more attention to barbecues than politics, and 2) the Ontario model that skews the topline numbers is producing a lot of erratic noise in the data, whereas Quebec is a lot clearer and has the Liberals way ahead. I trust his judgment. Here's what Evan Scrimshaw, one of the co-founders at Lean Tossup has to say.

TL;DR -- dead cat bounce. Or as P.J. Fournier of 338 says, follow the tide rather than the position of the water. Remember again that in 2015 the Liberals didn't have a steady track upward until September. But no matter what, keep working hard like you're 20 points in the hole. Above all, keep calm and block the Cons.

Jackie Blue said...

Also, regarding the signal to noise ratio: forgot to mention Frank says there's a 6-point MoE for federal polls and 1 of every 20 samples is an outlier.

EKOS on July 31, 2015: NDP 33.8 CPC 30.1 LPC 23.4


Jackie Blue said...

Last one about polling. Ignore Grenier's poll tracker if you aren't already. Nanos got blacklisted from it (thus rendering the numbers inaccurate) and Frank's latest won't be in there this week. Grenier just announced on Twitter he's on vacation until August 12, but Lean Tossup is still active and so is 338. And Nanos has an explainer about his methodology in the G&M in case anyone doubts his track record. The Christmas shopping analogy seems pretty apt. The media fails abysmally at pumping editorial spin into polls attempting to influence the numbers (mostly in a Con direction), but the pollsters themselves haven't exactly been all that credible on their end either. Moral of the story, everyone needs to do better.

brawnfire said...

Something to grin :D about, this fine day.

This headline and content, sent my way. A positive one, for a change.
"Ford keeps popping up, to Conservatives' chagrin"

Jackie Blue said...

OK, I lied. More polling drama. Léger started another pissing match, this time intimating that Mainstreet polls are bogus and only the cabal of Con-friendly pollsters (him, Darrell Pricker and Anus Reid) are correct, while the rest are, as Dubya used to say, "fuzzy math" (or as Trump calls it, fake news, lying crooked fake polls). Anus was bashing Nik Nanos again, and giving backhanded compliments to Frank Graves (but only because his numbers this week were more Con-friendly). So Quito Maggi called him and Léger out for unprofessional conduct and now there's a flame war going on. (In French!)

Again I say, do better. America is a shitshow right now, but even at the worst moments of the acrimonious Hillary/Donald bloodsport, nobody from Rasmussen got into a ego-driven shit fit (or Twit fit) with data analysts from Gallup or Pew Research. Apparently the Canadian polling industry doesn't have a lot of credibility, and it's easy to see why. Dumb troll arguments from high school math geeks who never grew up. I honestly wouldn't be surprised if, after the election, someone discovers the pollsters were working with the Cons and cooking the books. But I digress.

Now for some actual moneyball. Latest 338 Canada projection (minus EKOS poll that even Frank says could be an outlier, plus he doesn't have a fully clear report from all the provinces yet). Even though the Cons lead in the popular vote percentages, the bulk of their support is still concentrated in flyover country, which doesn't make a whole lot of difference in terms of seats. (Sort of a reversal of Hillary winning the popular vote and Trump winning the electoral college.)

New seat projections look a lot like 1972: LPC 149, CPC 147, NDP 23, BQ 12, GPC 6, IND 1, PPC 0

[E]ven though there is no definite favourite as of this writing, the trend of the last few weeks is remarkably clear: The Conservatives have let their winter/spring lead fade into the distance and it appears the SNC-Lavalin story may have run its course.

Will the CPC choose to go headfirst into this campaign running against the “Trudeau brand”? It would appear to be a risky bet, although the Prime Minister surely has detractors across the country ... [A]ccording to these figures, Andrew Scheer may not pull his party down, but neither does he push his party upwards – unlike Trudeau with the LPC.

Still too close to call and no doubt there will be a few curveballs from now until the fall, but #CampaignsMatter and the trend line for the Liberals appears to be trending upwards. The Cons are either stalled or slightly on the down swing. And hopefully Ontario comes out in droves to vent their frustrations against Dougie Scheer.

ABC, everyone. ABC. Easy as 123.

lagatta à montréal said...

Antonia's article was also very funny.

Simon said...

Hi Jackie....Thanks for the video, and don't worry I don't know the meaning of the word surrender. 😼 We are in for the dirtiest election in modern Canadian history, but I'm still hopeful that reason will prevail, and that when people take a good look at Scheer they will realize that he is unfit to be prime minister...