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Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?
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Author:  DrJones [ Mon Mar 09, 2009 6:30 am ]
Post subject:  Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

Shameless plug time - a friend of mine is writing for a new website that's still in the alpha stages of development (i.e. looks crummy and has little to no features.)

But, he writes well and has a piece up on the new leader of Ontario's NDP. So, I'm plugging the article for him and trying to get some discussion going!

Check it out here

Yesterday, the Ontario NDP leadership convention came to an anti-climatic end, with the selection of newcomer Andrea Horwath, who replaced outgoing leader Howard Hampton.

Horwath, a self-proclaimed “union brat”, claimed that the only way she was able to accomplish her goals in life, including her university education, was because her father had a well-paying job in the auto sector.

The 46-year-old won with 60.4 per cent of the vote over MPP Peter Tabuns (Toronto-Danforth) with 39.6 per cent. She was the lone female candidate, and ran on the slogan, “It’s time.” Horwath promised to defend Ontario’s traditional economy no matter what stood in the way. In response to the economic crisis and the deterioration of the province’s manufacturing sector, her rallying cry was the peculiar "We won't adjust! We refuse to adjust!"


The commentary practically writes itself. This is the way to show your party is a party of the future???

8O :roll:

Author:  romanP [ Mon Mar 09, 2009 7:45 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

The NDP, both federally and provincially, seems to be quite happy to shoot itself in the foot again and again lately.

Author:  raydan [ Mon Mar 09, 2009 8:05 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

I vote 'atavistic fool'. :)

Author:  back_blastnet [ Mon Mar 09, 2009 10:15 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

While I welcome all articles and discussions like so many others I find this one lacking in depth and scope, but more importantly the context is completely ignored.

The first thing to remember is that in everything political there is NEVER enough time to talk about everything you want to talk about and put every idea forward that you want to plug. This and every marketing rule in the book dictates that you focus your message on your audience.

On Saturday Andrea won the ONDP leadership by capturing the most NDP member and Affiliate organization vote (which is mostly labour). So of course she's going to play up the 'union' part of her background and the issues that New Democrats are most passionate about but THAT is not all she is, in the coming months the public will hear about those thing but they'll hear about other things too.

The author unfairly focuses on the wrong part of Andrea's statement "Horwath, a self-proclaimed “union brat”, claimed that the only way she was able to accomplish her goals in life, including her university education, was because her father had a well-paying job in the auto sector.". The focus was on 'union' and 'auto sector' when it should have been on 'well-paying job'. In order to send our kids to university we need to have well-paying jobs. So we have money to pay taxes, so the government can make post secondary affordable, accessible to all and so that we've got money to directly help our kids go to school.

(and obviously that still doesn't cover all the aspects, the kids still have to work hard in school, they have to get part-time work and a million other things)

Nobody knows where her leadership will go or what changes (if any) there will be in the ONDP or their fortunes so this particular attempted analysis is entirely premature. But does serve to Bias the subject.

For the record I was on the central campaign team for one of the other candidates.
So my own perspective is from the outside of the inside.

Andrea won on the 3rd ballot which means two candidates dropped off first and she got 6/10 votes at the end. This vote shows clear division. I don't mean in the fractured, destructive way. All the campaigns put forward great ideas and there's a lot to be taken from each of them in forming a complete picture of what the province of Ontario needs to succeed. The vitriol and hate often present during leaderships just wasn't there.

Peter's focus on the environment, Gilles focus on workers and on branching off from the usual NDP messages (like law and order), Michael's focus on poverty, electability, disability rights and on all 480 municipalities (big and small) are just a few things that will help Andrea to complete the picture. I've known all four candidates for years and I respect all four who are incredibly hard working and in my opinion correct in what they say most of the time and have great ideas that could lead to wonderful things if they ever have a chance to be implemented.

The author correctly pointed out that the end was anti-climactic. It certainly was and with respect to the media (which is how most people outside of the party hear about things) it was overshadowed by John Tory's loss. I'm not being critical its just the reality of life. The ONDP is smaller these days and gets less interest and coverage. The party has plenty of work ahead of itself to correct that.

The fact that it was anti-climactic though was in of itself VERY climactic. I was at the last ONDP leadership convention and it was a completely opposite feel. People left that one angry and fractured. Its hurt the ONDP ever since. This convention while quiet feels like a corner has been turned. Most of the hatchets have been buried. There were plenty of people there that have been gone for a long time and are now back. The party itself is healthier and has more potential points of view from more people then it did a little while ago.

Well that's about as well put together and thought out I can be right now. It was a long wild weekend and before last night I only got 11hrs sleep since last Wednesday. I've been up for 5 hrs and still feel like I just woke up.

Author:  DrJones [ Thu Mar 12, 2009 10:14 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

Sorry to hear your candidate didn't win. I actually liked Tabuns quite a bit, at least because he seemed different. I just hope Horwath isn't a knee-jerk attack dog in the legislature - her "we don't adjust" comments give me serious concern.

Author:  2Cdo [ Thu Mar 12, 2009 5:22 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

I'll take Fools for $500 Alex!

Author:  back_blastnet [ Thu Mar 12, 2009 9:53 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Ontario's new NDP Leader - Atavistic Fool or Visionary?

There was definitely a small anti-tabuns sentiment. It more came from labour in that there are questions about a situation that happened while he was ED of Greenpeace.

To get really cryptic the leadership race turned into a Peter Leibovitch vs. Michael Lewis battle. Both are Steelworkers and Organizers in the ONDP. One supported Andrea and the other supported Tabuns.

But it would be a disservice to the rest of their campaigns and doesn't take everything into account. That is only one of the dynamics.

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