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Sunday, January 14, 2007 

Trying to Market Dion In Saskatchewan - Yikes!

If there is a true wasteland for the Liberal Party in Canada, it must surely be Saskatchewan. Alberta is not much better, but in Edmonton, the provincial Liberals are the Official Opposition Party. In the Saskatchewan Legislature there isn't even one elected Liberal. David Karwaki, Leader of the Saskatchewan Liberals, has tried two times to win a seat; both unsuccessfully.

The last Liberal government in Saskatchewan was the Ross Thatcher administration from 1967 - 1971. Saskatchewan people have a hate - hate relationship with the Liberal Party.

The only glimmer that the Grits have in Saskatchewan is Ralph Goodale who represents the affluent south Regina area as Member of Parliament and Gary Merasty who squeaked thru by a few votes to win in the far northern riding of Desnethe - Missinippi - Churchill River.

Stephane Dion was in Regina on the weekend. In typical fashion, the handful of local Liberals were paraded out in an attempt to ensure that there was at least a few faces for the photographers and national media. It was a pitiful affair.

CTV covered the Liberal leader's media scrum. "Dion said he believes there is the capacity to mandate a 10-per-cent biofuel content in gasoline by 2010 rather than the five per cent the Conservatives are currently proposing. That won favour with Lonny McKague, an farmer from Ogema, Sask., who said he considers himself a Liberal supporter. If the truth be told, Mr, McKague was actually a Liberal Party candidate in the Souris Moose Mountain Constituency.

There is NO possibility for a Dion breakthrough in Saskatchewan. Ralph Goodale will likely win his seat (as he usually does). The next election will be fought by and large between the New Democrats and the Harper Conservatives. Anyone who leans Liberal (outside of Goodale's Riding) who wants to stop Stephen Harper will VOTE for the New Democrats.

You see, a vote for Stephane Dion in Saskatchewan will help to elect Stephen Harper.

-CTV
-Macleans


Progressive Bloggers

Not the case in all ridings Buckdog. Gary Merasty is also a Saskatchewan Liberal MP so a vote for a Liberal by no means a voter for Harper.

I'll note however that the most recent Environics poll had the Liberals 2nd in Saskatchewan behind the Tories.

tj - you are correct on the Merasty seat - I'll adjust my post. Thanks!

Scott - rather than causing celebration in Saskatchewan Liberal ranks, that poll result should be causing panic in Saskatchewan Conservative circles.

So, the first place party should panic, the second place should stay mum, and third place party should blog in a triumphalist fashion, is that the general gist?

How significant are provincial comparisons when you consider the health of the Federal Liberals in BC, where there's not even a fiction of a provincial Liberal party, or in Nova Scotia, where the provincial party is moribund?

Jason, the fact that the provincial Liberals almost don't exist here, the Federal Libs have no troops on the ground to call on to canvass, put up signs, identify the vote, etc. Without any organization and actual bodies to do the work, how do the Dion Libs plan on winning seats?

I prefer to look long term, and vote Green rather than support the washed up NDP in this province. The Liberals would certainly take seats in rural SK upon two actions - listening and helping farmers gain an upper hand, and scrapping the long gun registry for an alternate system of enforcement. The general consensus is of course that the Liberals don't listen to the West, but the Conservatives are the flip side of that, they listen but take the West for granted, choosing to ignore it where possible to curry favour down east.

Provincially the Liberals will win seats next election, the NDP will take 3rd in most rural ridings. I know you don't want to hear that, but that's just how far the NDP has slipped.

Too bad you don't remember how the Conservatives bankrupted Saskatchewan .

Too bad that you won't see that the leadership of the provincial Saskatchewan Party are whats left over of the Conservatives who WEREN'T CONVICTED in Court of Queens Bench.

Too bad you are going to vote Green, whose support is an inch thick and a mile wide.

Too bad you won't recognize that the Saskatchewan NDP brought this province back from the brink of disaster.

Too bad that many in Saskatchewan would give this province back to the crooks and scheisters in the Saskatchewan Party.

Where I live, everyone knows that the Saskatchewan Party is simply the Conservatives under the witness protection program.

"Too bad you won't recognize that the Saskatchewan NDP brought this province back from the brink of disaster.
...
Where I live, everyone knows that the Saskatchewan Party is simply the Conservatives under the witness protection program."

The SK NDP brought this province TO a different kind of disaster. Things may be alright in the cities, but rural SK has been decimated, and I've witnessed too many NDP blunders to consider them some kind of saviour from Devine.

Given that, I'd be a fool to support the Sask Party for your reasons given, and you'd be a fool to support the NDP for my reasons (I've given before, and could give for hours). The choice seems obvious - Green or Liberal.

"The SK NDP brought this province TO a different kind of disaster. Things may be alright in the cities, but rural SK has been decimated,"
WHAT NONSENSE!
Maybe go take a look at rural Manitoba, rural North Dakota, rural Nebraska, rural Montana - there has been a change, friend, from the days of the old 3/4 section farm. Agriculture has changed across the Great Plains.

The larger farmers bumped the small guys out - equipment got bigger & farms got bigger. When that happened, the population started to migrate as it has all over the Great Plains.

You are simply being so short sighted, you want to see this as only a Saskatchewan issue brought on by the NDP. What nonsense! Open your eyes. Your hatred of the NDP has blinded you.

Grant Devine artifically propped up rural Saskatchewan by dumping billions of borrowed dollars ( ie. GRIP program, etc) - do you want to see a political party do that again?

Go take a drive thru the rural prairies outside of your own little world, and tell me that I am wrong!

Umm, LD, Saskboy's _job_ is driving through rural Saskatchewan visiting towns.

I'd suggesty you use your ears, not your mouth when SB talks about rural Sask.

Cheers,
lance

I've driven through all sorts of prairies, including Montana, and Manitoba. That the "world" is changing doesn't mean SK has to shuffle to the cliff along with it, in regards to agriculture. Opportunities were missed, or dismissed by our governments, at all levels, not just the NDP. While it's not possible to save every rural region, a lot has been done to drive people away, and that's wrong. The inequities and inefficiencies are everywhere, and conducted with the blessing of our current NDP government.

AND ANOTHER THING!

Your precious Liberals allowed the Crow Rate to END which then allowed the Railways (CN & CP) to start closing down rail lines. At that point Saskatchewan farmers had to move their grain by truck (instead of rail) and knocked the shit out of the provincial highway system. You and your pal Kate at SDA blame the NDP for that because you won't look at the truth.

Now Harper wants to end the single desk aspect of the Canadian Wheat Board and that will take another $1.6 Billion from farmers.

You convieniently blame the NDP.

You are NOT being objective nor pragmatic. You are being ideologcial. You have swallowed lies which you accept as truth.

AND ANOTHER THING!

Does Saskatchewan need a town every 14 kilometers? Why do we have more miles of highway then any other province in Canada? You want every single one of them to ALL be top notch highways for the 20 cars that are going to drive down many of them today.

Your unrealistic views will surely bankrupt this province once again.

Who gets to decide which towns are uprooted? You?

Highways are a big enough issue that the NDP decided that 100% of gas taxes should go into highways rather than 60%.

The SK. NDP are facing the same issues that the Liberals did after 13 years. The "time for a change" battle. I don't expect them to fair any better than the Liberals did.

Cheers,
lance

Obviously the local areas are evolving on their own. Where you used to have a town every 14 -20 kilometers, they can't ALL have an elementary school AND a highschool AND a hospital AND everything you wish there could be. Why do we have well over 400 Rural Municipalites?

Like in Manitoba, North Dakota, South Dakota, Nebraska, Montana, rural areas are evolving due to changes in agriculture and your incessent harping at the NDP being the cause is simplistic and out to lunch.

According to the polls, the FEDERAL Liberals and the FEDERAL NDP have the same amount of support in the province!

With all due respect, You're dreaming Saskboy if you think the Liberals are going to do anything but advocate keeping the Long Gun Registry in its current format, and they are right to do so.

Quite frankly, the way the Liberals gain seats in Saskatchewan is by continuing to loudly and strongly defend the Wheat Board; that is a political winner in both this province and Manitoba.

Look at those provincial poll #'s for Saskatchewan and Manitoba - significant drops for the Tories. In the two provinces where the Wheat Board is the most strongly supported, I dont think thats a coincidence.

"Why do we have well over 400 Rural Municipalites?
... your incessent harping at the NDP being the cause is simplistic and out to lunch."

Leftdog, the NDP are not the sole cause of rural decline, but in the areas I have knowledge, they certainly weren't doing simple things they could have to help rural Sask.

The reason there are so many RMs is due to geography, not bureaucratic inefficiency. There's a balance to be struck, no doubt, but amalgamating things left, right, and center isn't the silver bullet. In some cases, there is inefficiency introduced into our systems by forcing separate regions to merge into a single governing body. Few Canadians would be in favour of TD Canada Trust merging with CIBC, yet those same people might argue for municipalities an hour north of Yorkton to be telling municipalities an hour south of Yorkton how they are going to be educating their school children? WTH is wrong with this picture?

Was the death of CROW Mulroney or Chretien? Either way, that was a dumb move. And another dumb move was when the NDP allowed the rail lines to be ripped up and sold for the profit of CP and CN. They can share in the blame of the governments that allowed the plundering. They had the means to guide municipalities to the way of blocking the track destruction, but they ignored it.

SK is a big place geographically, and we can't expect things that work well in urban areas to translate into working well in our province. We maybe weren't living sustainably in the 20th Century, but the crash didn't have to be downloaded from urban areas onto rural areas. The NDP made their bed (in urban SK), and now they will get to lie in it.

1) "Was the death of CROW Mulroney or Chretien?"
Liberals under Chretien killed the Crow rate and really turned on the decline of rural Saskatchewan.

2) "And another dumb move was when the NDP allowed the rail lines to be ripped up and sold for the profit of CP and CN."
That is a TOTALLY false statement. The railways are regulated by the Federal dept of Transportation, the provincial government screamed blue murder - yet here you are with your mythology that it was the NDP. You are wrong.

POSTCRIPT: (TO ANYONE READING THIS THREAD THAT DOES NOT LIVE IN SASKATCHEWAN) when the next Saskatchewan election is called, it is going to be a hum dinger!

This is but a small sample of what you will witness for the entire campaign. It will be a two way fight between the Saskatchewan Party (the old PC Party) and the New Democrats - the Liberals don't factor).

The NDP were supposed to lose for sure in the 1999 election (but they won!) - Then the NDP were suppose to lose for sure in the 2003 election (but they won!) - and now a lot of folks are saying that the NDP is going to lose for sure in the next election - (the NDP will get a victory yet again)!!1

Buckdog I think anybody who has ruled out the NDP in the next election is insane. History has shown despite being week going into an election the NDP are able to get their stuff together and put together some great campaigns.

Though I do disagree that the Liberals will be a non-factor. The NDP have been in power for 15-16 years now. Alot of people are looking for change but do not feel that they could trust the Saskatchewan Party, because of Walls history with the PC party or simply because the Sask party has failed to offer their own vision. The Liberals do have a chance at getting their foot back in the door. We saw in the by-election that the Liberals were able to win in rural and urban areas. The Liberal party if it positions itself right will be a big factor in the election and depending on the election results a major player in the leg.

"That is a TOTALLY false statement. The railways are regulated by the Federal dept of Transportation, the provincial government screamed blue murder"

It's not "totally false" and here's why. According to the abandonment laws, the raillines HAD to be offered to the province and then the municipalities after the federal government gave up on them. The province was run by the NDP, which ignored the opportunity to create a provincially run railline, and now we are paying for that mistake many times over in road construction which the NDP also ignores in many rural areas. Highway 32, 368, 15 are just easy examples off the top of my head. Want to check if there's an NDP MLA in the vicinity of any of them?

The only rail lines left in the province not on the main routes are run municipally or by farming organizations. The "help" extended to municipalities who sought out a branch line purchase, was an adviser that told the municipalities to not bid for the lines at the proper time.

"It will be a two way fight between the Saskatchewan Party (the old PC Party) and the New Democrats - the Liberals don't factor)."

Strange you'd say that, considering the Liberals poll well above 20% last major poll I heard, and the NDP are close to touching the high end of 20%. Actual seats may come out with more NDP, but considering the two-faced nature of the NDP's stance of PR voting, it's a strange perspective to take that the Liberals aren't a factor.

"the raillines HAD to be offered to the province and then the municipalities after the federal government gave up on them."
They were offered for purchase at market value - are you proposing that the province should have established a provincial railway after the Federal Liberals created the whole mess?

Down in the Milestone / Weyburn area, some farmers did create a co-op type structure to run short line railways.

What would David McLean and all the right wingers have said about creating a 'Rail Crown' in Saskatchewan? Just not feasible.

I still think that holding the provincial gov't responsible for the ills of rural Saskatchewan is unfair and unrealistic.

"What would David McLean and all the right wingers have said about creating a 'Rail Crown' in Saskatchewan? Just not feasible."

Yet STC a transportation crow exists for the benefit of all citizens, as does/did Sasktel etc. Some crowns even make us a lot of money. Some so much, that their rate increases are given as examples of where our "healthcare and education" money comes from. Yet the NDP have been cutting libraries for almost their entire reign.

"I still think that holding the provincial gov't responsible for the ills of rural Saskatchewan is unfair and unrealistic."

Yeah, because it's not the Sask. Government's responsibility to look after the infrastructure needs of rural SASKATCHEWAN? Give me a break, whose responsibility could it possibly be then?

"Yet STC a transportation crow(n) exists for the benefit of all citizens"

You forget that the Saskatchewan Party hates STC and wanted to sell it!

---------
"Yet the NDP have been cutting libraries for almost their entire reign."

for gawds sakes man, the province had a $14 Billion when Devine was thrown out - lots of things got cut including 'libraries' - is libraries why you want Brad Wall to be elected?

I don't trust him. He worked for crooks and was tied in with the free liquor to the Legislature. I know you don't want to hear those things - but many many many of your fellow citizens feel that way and we are not willing to let Wall be the Premier just for a 'change' - a change to what?

The Saskatchewan party has flip flopped SO much and had so many conflicting promises, LOTS of people do not feel we can hand the whole thing over to them.

They are unremarkable. They are hollow. People are scared about what they will do.
Big deficits and tons of borrowing again?
Borrowing $1 Billion every year to create and prop up phony economics in the ag area so you can have lots of libraries.

It's a matter of scale and cost sense. We can't have a hospital in every town every 14 kilometers.
(Well we can, because we did, and went BROKE in the process). No thanks.

We have phony economics in the ag industry now, with the government making about 19 times what farmers do off their product. Bottle of beer = 1 penny for a barley farmer, and 19 cents for the NDP govt.

I don't want wall as premier, I want David Karwacki, and we've seen what happens to otherwise stable parties who have been in power since the early 1990s - Chretien/Martin ring a bell?

"Bottle of beer = 1 penny for a barley farmer, and 19 cents for the NDP govt."
What about in Albert - BC - Ont, is the NDP at fault in those provinces?

For me I just feel that because it is always so close between the Saskatchewan Party and the New Democrats, if someone votes for Karwaki they might end up getting Wall - you have to decide if you want Wall or not. I don't. I don't trust him.

The grievences against Calvert and the NDP are mostly coffee shop whinning and petty complaints.

The Liberals have had a LONG time to get their shit together in this province. Years!

You know all about the infighting that goes on between Saskatoon Liberals and Regina Liberals. They can't get along enough to even get a seat for their leader.

I respect your desire to vote Liberal and actually am glad that you stand for what you believe.

That IS what democracy is all about. The right to having a voice even if others disagree.

I come across strongly partisan but eveyone has a right to make the decision of what is right for them.

I actually enjoy your arguments and ideas.

My bark is worse then my bite. But I'm still voting for Calvert because he is a good guy and I trust him.

Karwaki is tenacious. He needs more people like you to advance his ideas.

What does it matter what beer is in AB? The NDP are in charge of SK, not AB, and they can make the economy into whatever they want. If they want to make 19 times the money farmers do off of selling beer or bread, then that's what they'll continue to do, without ensuring that the producer gets the lion's share.

The coffee shop complaints I have are more than just lost projects here and there. Yhey are entire towns/communities that are ruined; Farms destroyed and bought up by richer people to make money off of them instead - increasing our risk of a food crisis. Simple tweaks by the NDP ruined villages with hard working people looking to make them run efficiently and well, and the urban leaders decided they knew best and wouldn't let people run things in ways that work.

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