Tuesday, May 17, 2011

NDP: Official Opposition Or Parliamentary Dinner Theatre?

But that’s not what he really wanted to talk about. Mr. Angus wanted to introduce three rookie NDP MPs whose backgrounds are in arts and culture: Andrew Cash, a Juno award-winning musician from Toronto-Davenport who has played in a punk band with Mr. Angus; Longueil–Pierre Boucher MP Pierre Nantel, the a former artistic director for Cirque du Soleil Musique; and Tyrone Benskin, the new MP for Jeanne–Le Ber and former ACTRA national vice-president.

Actually, I am expecting the NDP to infuse the role of Official Opposition with the boundless creativity of youth.  Or we could get four years of this kind of thing

Although I must say the notion that a party promoting art as business and getting appalled looks from the Ottawa press corps is more than a little disturbing.  Capitalism, Ms. Taber, is about more than assembling widgets and shovelling pig-shit.

25 comments:

Steve V said...

Delusional line of the day:

Charlie Angus saying "we're not going to bring down the government tomorrow."

hattip kady omalley

Proud Canadian said...

I'm more concerned,that there seems to be little outrage about this here: http://natpo.st/lCa91Q Just imagine the outrage from the opposition parties if Mr.Harper's family had gone on a paid trip by "BIG OIL!"

bigcitylib said...

I don't really find the Layton at Disney World thing to awful. The not bringing down the gov. line is far worse. Either Angus IS delusional or the NDP has learned to sling bullshit.

Proud Canadian said...

Big you said:

"I don't really find the Layton at Disney World thing to awful. The not bringing down the gov. line is far worse. Either Angus IS delusional or the NDP has learned to sling bullshit."

I agree with you on being delusional or bullshit! But you really think there wouldn't be an outrage in this country if "BIG OIL" had paid Mr.Harper's family a trip to Disney World? Common!

Omar said...

$2,754 and a $50 Scrabble game. Wow. Colour me outraged as well!

lol

Steve V said...

On the plus side, if the NDP think they have this type of power, Liberals can accuse them of propping up the government ;)

Holly Stick said...

What are you complaining about? Would you have preferred him to say: 'We're going to bring the government down tomorrow?'

It's a platitude, but so what?

I hope the media starts to look at the Conservatives just as critically as they have suddenly decided to look at the NDP.

Sorry, Liberals are irrelevent for now.

Proud Canadian said...

I'm expecting the NDP to bring forward a non-confidence motion soon after the government presents their budget! ;)

sharonapple88 said...

Actually, I am expecting the NDP to infuse the role of Official Opposition with the boundless creativity of youth. Or we could get four years of this kind of thing.

It was weird.

So, they want an increase in funding, but they have no plan on how to do this... Or maybe they do have a plan, but they're not going to release it until they form the government. Until then, they're going play Jiminy Cricket to the goverment's Pinocchio.

They didn't need a press conference to tell us this.

mystereeoso said...

So much cynicism here.

Charlie Angus, Paul Dewar and Peggy Nash all have terrific performance records on the arts especially at committee level.

But we didn't hear from Pablo once on the arts during the election.


rv butim

Tof KW said...

Nowhere in the same league as the "not bringing down the government tomorrow" line, but this is a rather choice bit of delusion from Mr Angus as well:

Earlier, he had described how the NDP opposition in a majority government will be more effective than the Liberals were during preceding years of minority government ... “We feel that we’re much stronger and we’re ready to take on Mr. Harper when we need to.”

Is glue sniffing now a requirement in the NDP caucus, or are they really that clueless as to what a majority government is?

mystereeoso said...

They're simply addressing the constituency that voted for them. People in the arts know full well what's coming.

Tof KW said...

mystereeoso, I was not addressing your comment. However since you wish to delve into mine, this press conference Angus put on was nothing but theater, basically saying "look at us and our new MPs - we're relevant, really!" And likewise the press savaged them, as they should.

The dippers have A LOT to learn about being the official opposition. Lucky for them, they've got 4 years to try and figure it out.

In the meant time, I will enjoy every minute of the Harper war machine aiming their guns at Layton and the NDP. That may just be the most enjoyable aspect of the next 4 years for me.

mystereeoso said...

Dear T of KW,

I wasn't (did I say I was?) delving into your commentary. Nothing to delve. Rather, I was referring to the generalized level of cynicism reflected in this thread.

The sad fact of the matter is as little say as they have, and as much as they may have to learn, the NDP have the position the LPC blew. You (not you personally T of KW) can't blame Iggy either. #LPC blew it on the ground in ridings where albeit good candidates were behind the eight ball. Guys like Kennedy organizing "arts townhalls" while Peggy Nash was way out in front sitting on committees with and actually meeting people who's communities in large part are driven by creatives - Junction Triangle case in point. That happened across TO. The NDP may have a lot to learn - but at least they're already in the game.

The #LPC have my sympathy but comments like yours reflect a condescending, cynical and ungracious attitude that is as unbecoming as the average Blogging Tory's. If you're so sure you're gonna sit back and enjoy for the next four years you might as well be a #cpc in my book.

Sorry.

sharonapple88 said...
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sharonapple88 said...
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sharonapple88 said...

Cynical is accusing them of angling for a puff piece for some of their new MPs, since this information seemed to dominate the press conference. I lean towards naivity on their part. They didn't seem to consider the possibility that the media would have another agenda going in there. The media wanted a fake lake or fight jet costs - essentially for the MPs to do the research for them.

Some of the questions, though, posed by reporters are legitmate ones -- Are you worried about the majority you are facing? Do you think that you can have any kind of influence?

Who hasn't been wondering things like this the last few days?

And with a deficit and Flaherty hinting at big cuts in the future, the real fight will be to get the government to maintain services, not to expand it. Not that the fight will do any good considering the NDP are facing majority... not unless they have some Ace (ie. blackmail material).

Evil Brad said...

Now that the moderate centre has rotted out of existence, Parliament is now composed of two parties that are the mirror image of one another

Tof KW said...

mystereeoso, I in fact am a Tory, just not one drinking from Harper's Kool-Aid.

And you will rarely see me comment kindly upon the NDP, as in my view they are no different from Harper's CPofC, just a left-wing version of it.

As Evil Brad just wrote, now that the moderate parties, the Progressive Conservatives and the Liberals, have rotted out of existence; our Parliament is stuck with two parties filled with populist bullshit that pander to zealous ideologues within their respective bases. And both are filled with members who are life-time political hacks (like Harper and Layton) or incompetent neophytes (like most backbench CPC and NDP MPs). They are literally left-and-right mirror images of each other.

Am I cynical? You're damned right after the political system of moderate-right and moderate-left that government this nation successfully for 130 years has been completely shot to hell. Welcome to the new hyper-polarized world of US politics within Canada.

Tof KW said...

Correction, second last sentence should have read:

You're damned right after the political system of moderate-right and moderate-left that governed this nation successfully for 130 years has been completely shot to hell.

mystereeoso said...

"Through perseverance many people win success out of what seemed destined to be certain failure." Benjamin Disraeli

Tof KW said...

"He was distinguished for ignorance; for he had only one idea, and that was wrong."
Benjamin Disraeli

You really wish to throw around quotes by Disraeli with someone who employs his image as their avatar?

mystereeoso said...

You sure do get bent out of shape, Tof KW. I'm not one to put much stock in avatars. But yours does give me an idea. Consider Disraeli, a 30 something artist on his first day of parliament. That is all.

Tof KW said...

Disraeli was a solicitor first, and a entrepreneur who lost a considerable fortune over a mining bubble burst. Frustrated, he turn to literature, then politics, and yes all by the age of 30. The rest is history of course, but I believe the point here is that Disraeli was gifted, and ambitious.

I have no problem with youth mystereeoso, nor artists. But there is a basic competency here that I apply to anyone running for public office, in that one should at least attain a degree of some sort, or create a successful enterprise, or something of this nature, before being able to legislate and help create laws.

I know that is terribly prejudicial on my part, for after all the institution is called a house of commons for a reason. Even so I can’t help to feel a certain apprehension that we have legislators in the 41st parliament that include a 19 year-old who’s ambition prior to winning a seat was to work part-time at a golf course. Or of course the infamous barkeep who vacationed in Vegas during the election, only to find she was now representing a riding she had never visited in her life, and for an electorate she could not communicate with as she was unilingually English.

And there is more, including within the Conservative’s ranks, but I’ve made my point …and that is all.

mystereeoso said...

Well for sure, part of the intent of that presser was to play up the not insignificant backgrounds of the culture types that the NDP has attracted to its ranks over and above the (accidentally elected?) newbie mps that you mention. And the qualifications of those three alone are formidable compared to most of what passes for a cpc mp rank and file, as you suggest. T'will be interesting to watch as things play out - BCL nailed it in his post - delightfully both criticism and witticism.