Sunday, April 26, 2015

#LifeWithNDP

If you've yet to come across it on the Twitterverse, there is a semi-popular hashtag circulating among the various conservative politicos that talk about how bad life and the economy was under the various New Democratic Party regimes that have ruled parts of this country off and on since the 60s. #LifeWithNDP is a fairly petty and intellectually dishonest campaign started by two pundits to counteract the recent surge for the NDP in Alberta's provincial election, falling back on the one thing conservatives (and some liberals, of course) do best: fear-mongering about them evil socialists. Its gotten so bad that the NDP sent out an email to supporters crowing over it.

Now, don't get me wrong - I'm with you guys. As a general rule, I don't like NDP policies or records or even their underlying ideology. I can sit here all day long and talk about the failings of various Dippers from coast to coast, in fact I would find that to be a fun summer event to attend.

However, let's get something straight here: the Alberta NDP and Rachel Notley are not the second coming of the Bolsheviks and Lenin. In fact, its kind of a stretch to even call Notley "centre-left"; her party is its own creature, with policies that straddle the political spectrum and would make more than a few bobo NDPers from Toronto blush.

But you know what? That doesn't even matter. Notley could be the next Trotsky and #LifeWithNDP would still be missing the most salient point of this election: the Conservatives that have run the province for generations are tired, out of ideas, and need to go. #LifeWithNDP perfectly encapsulates this fact, having to fall back on old tricks and scary quotes about luggage as a graduation gift or other inane, irrelevant things.

When you have no legitimate criticisms, no way or will to defend your own record, all you can do is flail about, screaming about the reds in the vain hope voters will listen.

Its time for a change, and the people ending their 140 characters with #LifeWithNDP are quaking in their boots over it. They know full well that their own parties have failed to deliver promised goods, and afraid of the fact that voters are starting to look elsewhere. They are afraid that voters see something different and hopeful with the NDP - or, frankly, maybe they see something that promises a return to how the conservatives in this country used to be, rather than the power-hungry messes they are today.

Personally, I'm enjoying every minute of it. I may not agree with the NDP on policies, but I do agree it is time for change in Alberta. I even feel that kinship with the Wildrosers. Embrace the change, conservatives - let someone else have a hand at the till. Through that change, you'll better yourselves as well, and rather than grovelling about NDP governments from the 1990s in 2015, maybe you can get some legitimate grievances to complain about.

5 comments:

  1. I'm a partisan big-L Liberal. I do not find the modern NDP scary, extreme or radical whatsoever. There are things I disagree with the NDP. But it is great that we have a multi-party system with more than two parties.

    The recent NDP provincial record in BC, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and Nova Scotia are mixed with good and bad. Just like the record of any party in government.

    The NDP record in Ontario is usually used to demonstrate why that party should never be in power. Rae was dealt a lousy deck of cards and his time in government was not that bad. The NDP government had some accomplishments on progressive issues such as social policy, environment and education. "Rae Days" were technically successful, and looking back a "Rae Day" is defiantly a better option that lay offs.

    The attacks on Rae from the right were borderline hysterical. Opponents of the NDP were well organized and financed to take down the government. On the other hand, the Rae government alienated their leftist base. Unions were not happy with the Rae government. Going into the 1995 election, the NDP lagged in finances compared to the Liberals and Tories.

    Prominent Dippers of 2015 are much more moderate in their outlook. There may be some kooky individuals in their base, but most NDP politicians, organizers and supporters are not anywhere near radical.

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  2. The problem with the NDP is when they are dealt a "lousy" hand their decisions make it worse. This is partly the result of inexperience in government and partly personal flaws within the NDP leadership. In Nova Scotia, a province with a declining population the NDP gave first crack at public sector jobs to unionized NS employees, it's a little thing for sure but, people aren't going to move to Nova Scotia without a job and frankly considering the Nova Scotia public service pays about a third less than BC, Ontario or Alberta, the people from outside Nova Scotia who are applying must really like the place. Poor decision. Or BC with the fudgeit budgets: it would have been a very small deficit, not the end of the world, instead Glen Clark and the NDP decided to lie-poor decision. Or the fast ferries in BC. Yes BC Ferries needed new boats but the tendering process was all wromg and rigged so that Washington Marine Group would win the contract in a marginal NDP seat! Poor decision. Or the Millenium line where all the transit experts, most mayors and councillors within Metro Vancouver and population density favoured a more Northern route, the NDP in its bid to save marginal constituencies built the Skytrain line further South resulting in the need to spend another $700 million to build the more Northern evergreen Line. Poor decision.

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    1. Hey man, I'm with you - 100%. Boo NDP, seriously. I just don't find these arguments all that convincing coming from, say, a PC partisan looking to distract from his own party's failings.

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    2. Hey buds, I'm not the one that put the Millennium line in the wrong place for partisan purposes! The NDP has built a reputation as a party that is Holier-than-thou, they were a party that supposedly stood up for the little guy. It's simply not true. The Tories and Liberals don't disguise who they are, the NDP does-that is my problem with the NDP.

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