Alberta Politics: There’s no life like it! Alberta’s right-wing troll army is recruiting

ILLUSTRATIONS: Poster thanks to the U.S. Army, circa 1941-42 or whenever they finally got around to joining the fight, with a little help from PhotoShop. Below: Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi – is he the target of the Troll Army’s latest Alberta campaign? The ad in question. Alberta’s right-wing Troll Army is recruiting! There’s no life ...

Alberta Politics: Jason Kenney – just visiting Alberta? – piously congratulates Michael Ignatieff for Order of Canada

PHOTOS: A screen shot from the Conservative Party of Canada’s vile “Just Visiting” ads, which were designed to undermine then Liberal leader Michael Ignatieff in the spring of 2009. They worked. Below: Dr. Ignatieff, who on Friday was awarded an Order of Canada, and Jason Kenney, candidate for the leadership of the Alberta Progressive Conservative ...

Accidental Deliberations: On judicious outrage

Following up on this post, let’s take a look at the flip side of the possibility that political parties can help themselves out significantly by taking umbrage with competitors’ treatment of them – which is the success (or lack thereof) of exactly that strategy over the past decade. As I’ve pointed out before, while 2004 ...

Accidental Deliberations: Attack and response

Earlier this week, Andrew Coyne mused on Twitter about how parties seek to make hay out of attacks by their opponents, with particular emphasis on the Libs’ response to PC and Con attacks on their leaders in 1993 and 2004. But I’d think it’s worth noting some distinctions between then and now which may make ...

Accidental Deliberations: Juxtaposition

The current Liberal leader, who apparently saw no reason to think his actions in the present might result in the loss of his party’s self-proclaimed brand: Trudeau said he finds Canadians he talks with when he travels are open to the idea of balancing security and rights. But he conceded that he may have underestimated ...

Accidental Deliberations: On complexities

Bruce Anderson writes that as some of us have long suspected, a true three-party federal race is developing which will create some new complications for the Cons and Libs alike. But it’s worth pointing out one area where the Cons are in much worse shape than they’ve ever been. Before the 2008 and 2011 elections, ...

Accidental Deliberations: On alternative explanations

In 2011, one of the turning points in Canada’s federal election campaign (at least in determining which party would form the Official Opposition) came when voters learned about Michael Ignatieff’s refusal to show up for work in the House of Commons. One might have expected the Libs’ next leader to avoid leaving himself open to ...

Scott's DiaTribes: Was Tim Hudak Ontario’s version of Michael Ignatieff circa 2011?

I was thinking about that comparison as I digest a surprising Liberal majority in Ontario this AM (but the folks at Forum and Ekos with their last polls called it – so kudos to them. I think Nanos also had 1 poll out that pretty well mirrored the results). Thinking back to 2011, Harper was ...

Alberta Diary: Conservative former Edmonton mayor endorses conservative future Alberta premier: Yawn

Former Edmonton Mayor Stephen Mandel and PC leadership candidate Jim Prentice, obviously pleased to be in one another’s company, at a news conference yesterday in Edmonton at which Mr. Mandel endorsed Mr. Prentice. Below: The other Tory leadership candidates, Ric McIver and Thomas Lukaszuk, and New Democrat MLA Rachel Notley, who is expected to declare ...

Calgary Grit: 10 Years of Blogging

Happy Trails Back when I first sat down to rant about politics on May 15th 2004, I never expected I’d still be doing this over 3,000 posts later. The blog has outlasted 3 Liberal leaders, been through 4 federal elections, and documented my involvement on a handful of losing leadership campaigns. During that time, Bart ...

Calgary Grit: Bart’s Books: The Michael Ignatieff Experiment

“I had made myself into a politician, and I didn’t much like what I was becoming.” On my Christmas reading list this year was Michael Ignatieff’s latest book, Fire and Ashes, which takes the reader from the moment “the men in black” recruited him to come back to Canada, to his historic defeat on May ...

Accidental Deliberations: New column day

Here, on how Michael Ignatieff’s empty vessel politics might become the norm if voters don’t respond with due skepticism to increasingly sophisticated vote-swaying tactics. For further reading…– The year’s two must-reads on the evolution of politics are Sasha Issenberg’s The Victory Lab (referenced in the column) and Susan Delacourt’s Shopping for Votes. And both provide ...

Accidental Deliberations: Friday Morning Links

Assorted content to end your week. – Glen Hodgson and Brenda Lafleur explain how Canada’s lower and middle classes alike have been left out of any economic growth as a result of increased inequality: We believe the more accurate interpretation is that after worsening in the 1980s and 1990s, income inequality and poverty in Canada ...

Calgary Grit: Iggy Returns

Everywhere you go these days, there’s Michael Ignatieff. I’ve even seen him walking around Yorkville twice within the past month. For those who miss seeing Ignatieff’s face on every third commercial, you can read some juicy nuggets from his new book here, an excerpt on how he handled defeat here, and an interview with Aaron ...

Northern Reflections: Bright and Blind

Michael Ignatieff still does not understand the part he played in his party’s worst defeat in history. Bob Hepburn writes that Ignatieff’s new book should be titled It Really Wasn’t My Fault: According to Ignatieff, the Liberals were trounced because they lacked money to buy television ads to counter Harper’s attack ads, which kept hammering ...

Cowichan Conversations: Longtime NDP MLA Corky Evans On Todays BC NDP

Richard Hub Hughes-Political Blogger The BC Liberals scored a surprise upset and were re-elected as the government of BC on May 14th, 2013 Since that time members, supporters and pundits along with some current and former MLA’s have been speaking up questioning the so called middle of the road positioning, sarcastically termed ‘Liberal Lite’ that ...

Alberta Diary: Count on it: Alberta’s doctors got more than the government’s press release indicates

Dr. Michael Giuffre jots down the Alberta Medical Association’s wish list before yesterday’s agreement with the provincial government. Actual AMA negotiators may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: Alberta Health Minister Fred Horne, Advanced Education Minister Thomas Lukaszuk. It will take a while to sort out what really happened in yesterday’s deal between the Redford ...

Calgary Grit: Justin Trudeau: Too Sexy For His Shirt, Too Sexy For Canada?

The only thing more predictable than Justin Trudeau’s win in the Liberal leadership race was that it would be followed by Conservative attack ads. For those curious what the sequel to “Not a Leader” and “Just Visiting” would look like, the wait is over: It should come as no surprise that the ad is repugnant, ...

Calgary Grit: Rae’s Day

Every political commentator loves to say “timing is everything in politics”, and every Canadian political commentator loves to say that Bob Rae never had good timing. He had the misfortune of becoming Premier before he was ready to govern, and had the misfortune of governing during a recession. His “second career” is often portrayed as ...

Accidental Deliberations: Tuesday Morning Links

This and that to start the new year. – Lynn Stuart Parramore discusses the dangers of needless means-testing for basic social benefits: When I spoke to Joseph Stiglitz, he discussed the idea that “means-testing is mean.” Programs like Medicare and Social Security, he explained, are matters of political economy. They are important to social cohesion, ...

Calgary Grit: Canada’s Greatest Losers

Liberals elected this loser at their 1919 leadership convention Last week, Martha Hall Findlay and Karen McCrimmon declared their candidacies for the Liberal leadership race. This week, George Takach has taken the plunge. I’ve posted one blog interview with David Merner, and will have others with David Bertschi and Alex Burton next week. Deborah Coyne, ...

Accidental Deliberations: On questionable advice

Shorter Zach Paikin: In order to avoid the fate of the Ignatieff Libs, the NDP should totally abandon any principles and re-run Ignatieff’s “we stand for nothing, but at least we’re not that guy!” campaign.

Alberta Diary: Anonymous comments? Dean Del Mastro’s right: there oughtta be a law!

A young member of the Tory Online Rage Machine (TORM) composes a mean Tweet using talking points from Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s office. TORM operatives may not appear exactly as illustrated. Below: The unfortunate Dean Del Mastro. It’s hard not to feel a pang of sympathy for Dean Del Mastro, the Conservative MP for the ...

Pop The Stack: You’re Wrong Adam Goldenberg

Adam Goldenberg has an opinion on strategic campaigning and he is off base in so many ways. Green party leader Elizabeth May has suggested that her party and the NDP refrain from running candidates in the Etobicoke Centre by-election. But Mr. Goldenberg says: Elections are not primarily about picking winners and losers. The process matters more than ...

Pop The Stack: You’re Wrong Adam Goldenberg

Adam Goldenberg has an opinion on strategic campaigning and he is off base in so many ways. Green party leader Elizabeth May has suggested that her party and the NDP refrain from running candidates in the Etobicoke Centre by-election. But Mr. Goldenberg says: Elections are not primarily about picking winners and losers. The process matters more than ...