Archives

A sample text widget

Etiam pulvinar consectetur dolor sed malesuada. Ut convallis euismod dolor nec pretium. Nunc ut tristique massa.

Nam sodales mi vitae dolor ullamcorper et vulputate enim accumsan. Morbi orci magna, tincidunt vitae molestie nec, molestie at mi. Nulla nulla lorem, suscipit in posuere in, interdum non magna.

Quit the pandering (or be more subtle about it).

A memo to Mr.Ignatieff:

I agree we should not single out regions in Canada when running a political campaign, and I get that you’re trying to be more competitive out in Western Canada, but I agree with my colleague Steve over at Far and Wide: I think you’re making your pandering to the West and the oilpatch out there far too obvious (That’s tarsands, Mr Ignatieff.. not the attempted sterile term of “oilsands” that even you have taken to using of late). When even the Alberta government sounds more moderate then you when they call the National Geographic article on the tarsands “fair”, I think you should be dialing back the rhetoric a bit.

The problem as I see it up in Canada has been that a portion of this country still think the environment and the economy are in conflict with each other, while in the US, President Obama believes the 2 are interconnected, which is why he has spent such massive parts of his stimulus package on green technology and alternative sources of energy. In Canada, the Conservative government has not, and even though I think Ignatieff would be a lot better on the environment then they, the rhetoric coming from him on this tarsands issue makes me think he isn’t getting it either, and I don’t think trying to cozy up to Big Oil is going to win you back a couple of Edmonton seats or a random non-Ralph Goodale Saskatchewan seat.

I should add I also “get” BigCityLib’s point of view on this being harmless and beneficial to the Liberals out West in the long run, since I do agree with oil prices in the tank and with President Obama definitely being serious about cleaning up carbon footprints, it will be the US that determines what goes on with development and environmental standards out there. Still, I’d ask Mr Ignatieff to try and not come across as trying to out-Conservative the Conservatives on the declared love for the tarsands, because he’s causing a lot of anxiety on the progressive wing of his party who doesn’t want the environmental file thrown away, merely because we couldn’t sell a carbon tax shift the past election.

24 comments to Quit the pandering (or be more subtle about it).

  • Roll Tide

    @Jodine Chase

    Preston Manning’s father made the deal with J. Howard Pew on a handshake. Preston told me that years ago.

  • Jodine Chase

    Just so you know, the term oilsands has been in use for over 40 years. The very first oilsands extraction company, which started in 1967, was called Great Canadian Oil Sands (GCOS) before it became Suncor.

  • Jim

    Ok so here it is again without typos perhaps Scott can just delete the earlier one….

    James Bowie: “Until then, I am very happy to see our leader appealing to all Canadians and supporting economic growth in a time of hardship.”

    For the oil sands to be even the slightest bit profitable requires oil to be above $60 a barrel. It’s below $40 now. James you should know that it costs far more to mine oil in the oil sands than pumping for regular oil so at current world oil prices it is NOT promoting economic growth to promote a money losing industry right now like the oil sands. Why do you think Alberta is facing it’s first deficit in decades? Because the oil sands are no longer profitable.

    A forward looking approach would be to look for alternative energy sources and invest there rather than throwing more good money after bad on the oil sands and the completely unproven carbon capture and sequestration (which a 2008 Environmental study showed actually emits just as much CO2 as regular harnessing of the oil sands) (which we are planning to spend BILLIONS on in the years ahead regardless).

    It’s time for a wake up call. James why don’t read the National Geographic Expose and get back to us about how wonderful the oil sands are?

    See
    http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2009/03/canadian-oil-sands/kunzig-text

    Even the Alberta Energy Minister called it “fair”. He was more accepting from the article that was Ignatieff.

    What was Ignatieff’s response to National Geographic? (these are direct quotes from the scrum)

    “je tire pas de leçons des journaux d’ailleurs.”
    and “je prends pas de leçons des gens d’ailleurs.”
    Translations: “I don’t take ANY lessons from foreign magazines.”
    and “I don’t take any lessons from foreigners”

    I expect better from someone from Ignatieff frankly and I think a lot of Liberals do too – we hear this stuff bashing foreign perspectives from American Republicans, not Canadian Liberals. Al Gore referred to defenders of the oil sands as junkies do we no longer listen to him either? Because up until recently we did.

    Do you still think after reading the National Geographic article that the current approach makes for good policy? Do you think it’s worth spending BILLIONS on carbon capture and sequestration when you have complained loudly about the size of the deficit?

    I expect Ignatieff is getting a lot of messages right now like those of Scott and Steve V and he will soon change course to something more balanced and that isn’t so dismissive of criticisms of the “world leading” oil sands. Otherwise this will be just like the Iraq issue, something that 4 or 5 years from now everyone will see what a disaster it was and he’ll have again been wrong.

    I still support him obviously and it won’t stop from voting Liberal, but I think he needs to recognize that he’s just on the wrong side of this issue.

  • Jim

    Apologies for the excessive typos, I thought Scott’s blog allowed for editing comments within a few minutes of when they were posted, hopefully minor spelling mistakes and a missing word or two can be forgiven….

  • Jim

    James Bowie: “Until then, I am very happy to see our leader appealing to all Canadians and supporting economic growth in a time of hardship.”

    For the oil sands to be even the slightest bit profitable requires oil to be above $60 a barrel. It’s below $40 now. James you should knwo that it costs far more to mine oil in the oil sands than pumping for regular oil so at current world oil prices it is NOT promoting ecnoomic growth to promote an money losing industry right now like the oil sands. Why do you think Alberta is facing it’s first deficit in decades? Because the oil sands are losing are no longer profitable.

    A forward looking approach would be to look for alternative energy resources and invest there rather than throwing more good money after bad on the oil sands and completely unproven carbon capture and sequestration (Which a 2008 Environmental study showed actually emits just as much CO2 as regular harnessing of the oil sands).

    It’s time for a wake up call. James why don’t read the National Geographic Expose and get back to us about how wonderful the oil sands are?

    See
    http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2009/03/canadian-oil-sands/kunzig-text

    Even the Alberta Energy Minister called it “fair”. He was more accepting from the article that was Ignatieff.

    What was Ignatieff’s response to National Geographic? (these are direct quotes from the scrum)

    “je tire pas de leçons des journaux d’ailleurs.”
    and “je prends pas de leçons des gens d’ailleurs.”
    Translations: “I don’t take ANY lessons from foreign magazines.”
    and “I don’t take any lessons from foreigners”

    I expect better from someone from Ignatieff frankly and I think a lot of Liberal do too – we hear this stuff bashing foreign perspectives from American Republicans, not Candian Liberals.

    I expect he’s getting a lot of messages right now like Scott and Steve V’s and he will soon change course to something more balanced and that isn’t so dismissive of criticisms of the “world leading” oil sands. Otherwise this will be just like the Iraq issue, something that 4 or 5 years from now everyone will see what a disaster it was and he’ll have again been wrong.

    I still support him obviously and it won’t stop from voting Liberal, but I think he needs to recognize that he’s just on the wrong side of this issue.

  • IGGY

    Scott

    I am sure he does.In case you didnt realise that was all tongue in cheek. Also Brantford isnt even close but nice try.
    And avoiding the issue. your audience of 10 was i’m sure impressed.

  • generayburn

    @Reid – Wow you have an ugly blog with points you dont really back up with proof. Back to school for you.

  • @IGGY – I’m pretty sure the leader of the Liberal Party knows how to spell correctly, or at least how to spell check. I’m also betting the leader doesn’t have an internet IP based out of Brantford.

  • IGGY

    Hello Scott

    I was just informed by senior party staffers that YOU are the best informed of any Liberal Canadian to advise me on how to be run this party. Therefore I am sending a staff car to pick you up and you can from this point forward be my personal senior advisor. I will NOT take any action without your specific intelectual knowledge on any subject. Whatever you decide is best for ALL canadians will determine the direction that the Liberal Party of Canada will go. I would highly suggest that you hire as your assitant Kady from Mcleans magazine as she also has the knowledge on how to run the party.

    HOW AROGANT~~~

    Hope you all have a good laugh!!

  • Jay

    “You guys on the left have to be a little more optimisic with the new technology heading this way.’

    What a crock. This technology does not exist but its cool to keep going with the hope it will one day. Yet every con out there slams solar panels because of its mere 10% efficiency. These two views don’t jive.

    To hell with Alberta’s filthy tarsands, they could be using solar instead of natural gas to melt the oil of the sand and that would reduce the CO2 footprint. No interest apparently even though Alberta gets the most sun. They prefer to wait for something that’s non-existent.

    They made this mess, and refuse to clean it up because it will reduce profit. In Alberta profit is king and as such there will be very little if any interest on the part of the oil industry to clean it up. So who pays for a technology that doesn’t exist and is seriously looking like it never will? Taxpayers?

    I sure hope not.

    As for Iggy if this is what you are expecting:
    “A return to a Liberal government would take us back to the “screw the west, we’ll take the rest” mentality. Carry on.”

    You can keep him, After railing against Harper for the doing pretty much the same thing I don’t intend on being a hypocrite. If that’s what it takes to be a liberal these days I guess I am not one. I expect liberal policies and honesty not conservative lite policies and more obfuscation.

  • dave

    I’m guessing there’s about a 0% chance that billg is going to vote liberal in the next election.

    Not even Obama could get the Liberals elected as we are still in the wake of the sponsorship scandal (yes, we are). That doesn’t mean that we try to please everybody all the time; at some point we have to set limits on rhetoric, as you coolly point out, scott. Blind support is not going to be doing future generations of Canadians (including, yes, Albertans) any favours. In the words of Chris Rock – the oilsands, and these comments, are “unbe-fucking-lievable”. It’s your base, stupid.

  • billg

    On the other hand I find it very ironic that a Right Wing Conservative party went on a 3 year spending orgy, and has refused to touch SSM or the Abortion issue. Voters trust the Cons and the Libs to gravitate somewhere in the middle, welcome to the middle Libs.

  • billg

    What Roll Tide said!! Aint it ironic that Ignatief and Kinsella have decided that the best way to win or even show in the next election is to embrace a right of centre attitude in regards to CO2! I know of no one who thinks that the oil sands or nuclear reactors or wind farms or coal fired electric plants are the best way to produce the energy we need to survive, but, until viable atlternatives come along we have to hold our nose and put up with it. Ignatief has done the unthinkable in regards to C02..he’s been truthful and upfront…and thats why the Liberals have a chance in the next election.

  • Roll Tide

    Far be it for me to get involved in a Liberal spat, I have enough with Harper.

    Ignatieff is facing reality. Obama did the same thing with coal, contradicting Bidens call for its ban.
    The oil sands, OK, tar sands(who cares), is a long term thing. Harper and Ignatieff both want to see it harvested in a clean a way as possibe. You guys on the left have to be a little more optimisic with the new technology heading this way.
    Be more Obamaish and less Suzukish.
    http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601103&sid=aCh8kEdlrPXE&refer=us

  • Good points James. The Liberals have lost their way in keeping in touch iwth Canada du to the internal Chretien – Martin wars. Ignatieff was talking at an Agriculture event yesterday about the urban-rural divide. He was saying he did not just want to be the Prime Minister of just urban Canada. That would likely be the case if he won based on current support sources. Was he pandering there? Not to my mind. He was reaching out to acknowledge and recognize a deficiency in the Liberal brand in rural Canada.

    Same thing in Alberta. There is problem with the LIberal brand out here all the way back to the NEP, which he noted was a mistake. That was not pandering. The key for him out here in Alberta is to understand we get on the negative impacts of oil sands development. We are ready willing and able to do something about it too. We don’t need pasifying or pandering. We need leadership and participation from the Feds to helpl to do it right, for the right reasons and not just rapidly for maximum corporate profits.

  • My Canada includes Alberta, and in Alberta they have oil in the sand. There’s nothing wrong with calling it Oilsand.

    How you determine that Ignatieff’s appeal in Alberta is “pandering” rather than just “campaigning” or “making everyone like you” is highly editorial. When he campaigns in Etobicoke is he “pandering” to Toronto?

    The Liberal Party needs to be nationwide. That is the essence of our 308 riding strategy. If that strategy is updated to exclude Alberta, I hope someone will issue a press release. Until then, I am very happy to see our leader appealing to all Canadians and supporting economic growth in a time of hardship.

  • foottothefire

    Good point, Scott. Subtle would be better…and an additional issue…infrastructure maybe.

  • when are people gonna realize that by sticking up for the people who are afraid of losing their jobs (if they havent lost them yet) out in the oilpatch, Ignatieff is actually refusing to pander to Central Canada.

    The oilsands are an environmental clusterfuck. They need to be cleaned up. However, shutting them down is against Canada’s interests. The fact of the matter is that by not shitting on one industry to get votes in another part of the country, Ignatieff is actually doing the right thing.

    Look at the asbestos industry…still alive and kicking in Quebec, despite being a solidly safe Bloc riding and employing less than 1000 people…

    Nobody campaigns on cutting tens of thousands of jobs during a recession, no matter how many people still wont vote for you. Save the sanctimony for the NDP. Jack Layton probably thinks oil workers dont have families or kitchen tables.

  • On a tangential note, really like the new site design but it’s making me yearn for spring even more than ever. Re Iggy, yeah, what you said and leave it at that cuz I could go on and that would get…well, not good for my blood pressusre.

  • As a proud Albertan I agree with your comments about pandering to the patch. We don’t need it and it will not show us Iggy gets it. We need a sound sober and serious engagement in making the exploitation of the oil sands better.

    Lots of things going on but they are fragmented and incremental. They do’t illustrate and change in the wrong conscisouness of the Klein era of do it rapidly don’t worry about doing it right.

    As for oil sand versus tar sands silliness, that is just political framing and message posturing. It does not address the real issues of the social, ecological and climate change concerns of the consequences of extensive oil sands development. Fixing the problem is the goal and the problem is definitely on the global radar screen. It can’t be deferred or ducked (sic)!

    Alberta best get on with fixing it and we don’t need to be humoured along in the process.

  • Greg

    “because he’s causing a lot of anxiety on the progressive wing of his party who doesn’t want the environmental file thrown away, merely because we couldn’t sell a carbon tax shift the past election.”

    Unless that “anxiety” turns into action (say a vote for the Greens, for example), Iggy will continue to shift the party to the right. In other words, he and the blue Liberals he trucks with, take your vote for granted.

  • Jay

    Personally, I have been waiting to see Ignatieff grand plan before making a decision on him. Funny thing happened since December, the reasons I supported the Liberal Party have been disappearing at a rapid pace. From a balanced approach to the middle east to our environmental stance.

    I have a feeling Ignatieff will lose more support than he’ll gain from sucking up to Alberta’s tailpipe. Albertan’s vote conservative just because and Iggy can do very little to change that.

    Multisyllabic words will scare more reformers than entice them.

    I’m nearly done as a member.

    I do now wonder though, to what extent was Iggy involved in Dion’s demise?

  • You guys shouldn’t be too concerned about Iggula’s pandering. We know he doesn’t really mean it and thusly aren’t taking it seriously.

    A return to a Liberal government would take us back to the “screw the west, we’ll take the rest” mentality. Carry on.

  • Northern PoV

    Pandering is Iggy’s stock-in-trade.
    Causes all kinds of mayhem, to wit:
    – enables Iraq war
    – ignites Quebec nationalists

    And in regards to tar-sands, NEP etc – this nonsense validates the straw dogs that drive “western alienation” and delivers Reformers disguised by their stolen Conservative brand.
    It will not help in Alberta and will (as usual) backfire elsewhere.

unique visitors since the change to this site domain on Nov 12, 2008.