With an election in the wind, it’s always worth remembering there’s life after politics. Consider Hugh MacDonald, once renowned as Alberta’s hardest-working MLA. The former Alberta Liberal Party stalwart served four terms as MLA for Edmonton-Gold Bar and certainly would have been elected to a fifth had he chosen toContinue reading
PHOTOS: Preston Manning has every reason to feel pleased with himself as he moves toward his goal of uniting Alberta’s right on his own terms, with an extreme social conservative candidate like Jason Kenney in the vanguard. Below: Mr. Kenney; Alberta Party Leader Greg Clark; Danielle Smith, just before sheContinue reading
PHOTOS: Veteran Conservative Lee Richardson with Alberta premier Alison Redford, who he served as principal secretary. Below: Prime minister John Diefenbaker, who Mr. Richardson served as executive assistant, and Alberta premier Peter Lougheed, for whom he was chief of staff. Understanding history requires a long view, and the picture thatContinue reading
PHOTOS: “That group of NDP activists was this big!” Jason Kenney is shown at the launch of his campaign to spring a kudatah on the Progressive Conservative Party in this CBC photo grabbed from the Internet. Actually, I have no idea what Mr. Kenney was saying when the CBC photographerContinue reading
PHOTOS: Jason Kenney and Stephen Harper seal the deal. Actually, I think Mr. Harper was welcoming Mr. Kenney to his cabinet as defence minister in this official looking portrait found on the Internet without attribution. I’m assuming it was created w…Continue reading
PHOTOS: Stephen Harper, the former prime minister, not exactly as he appeared at the Conservative Party’s Calgary Stampede barbecue last night, but close enough. Below: Jason Kenney, Mr. Harper’s former sidekick in Ottawa, whom the former PM endors…Continue reading
Following the death of Conservative Member of Parliament Jim Hillyer on March 23, 2016, Elections Canada has announced that a by-election must be called in the Medicine Hat-Cardston-Warner electoral district before September 26, 2016. The earlies…Continue reading
Peter McKay has been one of the most significant players in the Harper government from the beginning. No loss to Canada but this significant departure hurts Steve’s re-election efforts. Is Justice Minister Read more…Continue reading
TweetWith the next federal election less than one year away, the Conservative Party of Canada is close to nominating a full slate of candidates in Alberta’s 34 newly redrawn ridings. By my count, Calgary Rocky Ridge, Edmonton-Griesbach, Lakeland and Peace River-Westlock are the only ridings without nominated Conservative candidates in this province.Continue reading
Whew! This income splitting is a killer. Actual perfect families as seen by the Harper Government may not appear exactly like Canadian reality. Below: Queen’s University tax law professor Kathleen Lahey. A fundamental purpose the Harper Government’s ideologically driven income-splitting tax scheme is to undermine women’s equality, Queen’s University taxContinue reading
Manning Centre-Security Intelligence Review Committee Chair and Enbridge lobbyist Chuck Strahl. Below: Former would-be Reform Party prime minister Preston Manning; Reform Party prime minister in waiting Jason Kenney. All these slightly out-of-focus profile shots were taken by your blogger during his infiltration of the 2013 Manning Centre conference in Ottawa. WhenContinue reading
Chuck Strahl listens to a participant in the Manning Centre conference in Ottawa in March. Below: Manning Centre founder and figurehead, Preston Manning. Should Chuck Strahl be able to serve simultaneously on the board of the Manning Centre for Building Democracy, a partisan political organization tied to the ruling ConservativeContinue reading
Singing along: What we were promised by the Reform-Conservative platform. Below: What we got. Alberta’s Wildrose Party blossomed at the edges of the same muddy spring whence sprang the federal Reform Party of Preston Manning and Stephen Harper. As is well known, the Reform Party went on to engineer theContinue reading
The [Manning] centre would not be another political party, but help build an “infrastructure” for existing Conservative parties federally and provincially, Mr. Manning said. (source)
As other progressive bloggers have pointed out, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is obviously partisan – slanted towards the Conservatives. You really just had to look at their board of directors,
1. Preston Manning – Reform party founder and leader for many years. Long time associates with Harper for obvious reasons.
2. Cliff Fryers – currently the far-right party Wildrose party chairman. He was also party and campaign chairman for the Reform Party in the early 1990s.
3. Blair Nixon – no explicit connections, but tax advisor to a few natural resource companies.
4. Rick Anderson – national director of the Reform party in the early 1990s.
5. Thompson MacDonald – no explicit connections, but board member of an American mining company.
6. Gwyn Morgan – ties to various big corporations, including oil company Encana.
7. Tasha Kheiriddin – self-described conservative, also the President of the Progressive Conservative Youth Federation during the time of far-right Mike Hudak.
8. Tom Long – involved and worked for the Brian Mulroney PCs, then campaign manager to various PC candidates federally and provincially, then President of the Ontario PCs from 1986 to 1989, helped get Mike Harris elected, and was a founding member of the Canadian Alliance – and this is just according to the bio on the Manning Centre!
9. Dan Nowlan – Vice president of banking investment group, and according to an Elections Ontario file, in 2009 was the chief financial officer for the Progressive Conservatives’ Tim Hudak.
10. Chuck Strahl – former Conservative MP, active in the early reform days.
This is every member on the board. Which makes 8 out of 10 (80%) having explicit connections to right-wing political parties (Conservative, and its father, Reform Party), and 10 out of 10 (100%) having either a connection to a political party or business. This is why it’s so obvious this organization is a front for right-wing and business interests.
Regardless, I compiled some more data just to make this pronouncement even more conclusive. I looked at their 2012 youtube channel, which is the msot updated, and compiled some data. There’s (as of September 21st, 2012) 12 videos – 10 of which are speeches or conferences. One of those speeches is just from Preston Manning, so I have excluded it as well. In total, we’re looking at 10 videos, and the political affiliations of those speaking and participating.
So, made a list of all the speakers in each speech, and tracked their political affiliations. Keep in mind, for this, I excluded anyone who was already a board member from this list. I also won’t be tracking business connections, as I think that’s unnecessary considering the findings. I will be tracking influential unions members, just because there’s only one, so it doesn’t really detract from the end result.
Here are my findings:
- Six current Conservative Member of Parliament
- Including four current Conservative Cabinet Ministers
- Three former Conservative MPs
- One former Reform Party MP (Remember, not including board members)
- Three others with direct connections to the Conservatives (Campaign Manager, donor, chief of staff)
- One Republican
- One British Tory
- One Union Leader
- Zero current or former opposition members
- One guy with some past connection to the Parti Quebecois
See for yourself, here is the list of links and subsequent speakers and participants:
Speaker: HON. JOE OLIVER, MINISTER (Conservative Minister)
– Dawn Farrell, Executive
– Nancy Olewiler, Economist
– Robert Blakely, Union Leader (Union)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2wfJXb1WQbc&feature=plcp– March 16th
Chair: Dave Quist, IMFC
Speaker: MARVIN OLASKY, WRITER
– Michael Coren, TV Host
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9p6xHAIZL4M&feature=plcp– March 16th
Chair: Nicolas Offord, Executive
Speaker: HON. DIANE FINLEY, MINISTER (Conservative Minister)
– Kate Bahen, Charity Expert
– Ray Pennings, Cardus
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sBKeck2fZAI&feature=plcp– March 15th
Chair: Youri Chassin, Economist
– Eric Duhaime, Commentator
– Mathieu Bock-Côté, Sociologist (activity with PQ?)
– Tasha Kheiriddin, TV Host (National Post)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T3aWJEiCkN8&feature=plcp– march 14th
Hostess and Coordinator: Leah Costello, Writer
-Craig Dellandrea (Conservative donor and supporter)
– Cliff Fryers, Executive (Reform/UA activist)
– Deb Grey, Former MP (First Reform MP)
– Steve Madely, Radio Host
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_zE8luHStHc&feature=plcp– March 14th
Chair: Preston Manning, Manning Centre
Speaker: HON. PETER MACKAY, MINISTER (Conservative Minister)
-Barry Cooper, Professor – Duff Crerar, Military Historian
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ckDSQzsslgc&feature=plcp– March 14th
Chair: Dan Nowlan, Executive
Speaker: HON. TONY CLEMENT, MINISTER
Bill Robson, CD HOWE (Right-wing think-tank)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nGlnbCI7mvs&feature=plcp– March 14th
Chair: Nick Gafuik, Commentator
– Monte Solberg, Commentator (Conservative MP till 2008)
– Robert Sopuck, MP (Conservative MP)
– Bob Mills, Former MP (Conservative MP till 2008)
– Michelle Rempel, MP (Conservative MP)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LEtKYAf-y3M&feature=plcp– March 13th
Tom Flanagan, Professor (Long time buddies with Harper, current working for the Wild Rose Party)
Travis Smith, Professor
Ian Brodie, Strategist (former chief of staff for Harper)
Andrew Coyne, Commentator (National Post)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q8OYWCTtqzA&feature=plcp– March 13th
The [Manning] centre would not be another political party, but help build an “infrastructure” for existing Conservative parties federally and provincially, Mr. Manning said. (source) As other progressive bloggers have pointed out, the Manning Centre for Building Democracy is obviously partisan – slanted towards the Conservatives. You really just hadContinue reading