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Old 2008-09-08, 01:58   Link #1
Kaioshin Sama
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Canadian Elections 2008

Well it's happened like we all expected, Stephen Harper finally advised Governor General Michaëlle Jean to dissolve the latest minority government. It lasted pretty long, but we all knew it was coming for a while. The election is scheduled for October 14th, 2008 and the candidates are all the same:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Candidates
Stephen Harper (Conservative) (Incumbent Prime Minister)
Stéphane Dion (Liberal) (Official Opposition)
Jack Layton (NDP)
Gilles Duceppe (Bloc Québécois)
Elizabeth May (Green Party)
Here are the Key Issues:

Quote:

CARBON TAX

Liberal Party has proposed carbon taxes to cut greenhouse gas emissions and fight climate change, and will use the money to cut income taxes and boost subsidies to the poor. Liberal leader Stephane Dion says the changes will improve Canada's competitive position, but the Conservatives say the current economic slowdown means it is not the right time for new taxes and say greenhouse emissions can be limited by regulation.

ECONOMY

Harper proposes no major new tax cuts or spending, saying a steady hand is needed in troubled times. He says tax cuts introduced over the past year are enough to guide Canada through the current slowdown. Dion wants the government to play a bigger role, particularly in providing help to struggling manufacturers.

LEADERSHIP

Dion, a bookish former professor, trails well behind Harper in opinion polls on who would make a better prime minister, and he is behind Jack Layton, the leader of the small, leftist New Democrats in some surveys. The Conservatives say he is a vacillating leader who is "not worth the risk." The Liberals, for their part, say Harper broke a promise not to tax income trusts and is violating the spirit of his fixed-election date law by triggering an election now. The Conservatives point to Harper's record in his 2 1/2 years in power as evidence of a needed steady hand.

OTHER ISSUES

The Conservatives say more needs to be done to put Canada's stamp on the Arctic and to crack down on crime. The Liberals propose to make Canada greener, fairer and more prosperous. The Bloc Quebecois, which campaigns only in Quebec, says the French-speaking province should separate from the rest of Canada, but separatism is very much on the back burner at present. The New Democrats propose higher spending on transit, health care, child care, the environment and education. (Reporting by Randall Palmer, editing by Jackie Frank)
Well it's terrifying, but I sort of side with Harper on most of the issues. I don't think a Carbon Tax is a good idea at the moment with gas prices already at the level they are, I think the government should probably curtail spending for the time being so as not to potentially further aggravate downward economic trends, and I don't think Stephane Dion is fit to lead the country even in the best of times. I think that for the time being I'd want to see a continued Conservative minority government and once the economy starts to improve I'll be switching back to voting NDP.

Anyway, I created this thread as a sort of sister thread to the U.S Elections one for us Canadian's to talk about how things are going here. It's interesting that both countries are having elections so close together. Anyway, what do you guys think about the issues. Feel free to chime in people around the world.
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Old 2008-09-08, 02:33   Link #2
solomon
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So a manly conservative vs. a puny girly-boy liberal?

Well I think we know who has this one in the bag.
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Old 2008-09-08, 18:10   Link #3
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Could someone explain how this election was allowed? I have read that a law was passed that was supposed to fix elections dates so incumbent parties couldn't call elections whenever it would suit them best. What are the technicalities that allowed this election to occur?

P.S.
My info (<------) says I'm in Vancouver but I've only been here for a few weeks for university; I know nothing about the Canadian governmental system.
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Old 2008-09-08, 22:27   Link #4
Hari Michiru
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Dion is not worthy of being the Prime Minister, in my opinion. He's just not 'right' for this job; he's all talk, and no walk. I don't think he can bring Canada out of the economical depression. Plus, middle class people hate the carbon tax (as if we don't have enough taxes on our shoulders already). You can't change the environment if your middle class is broke, can you? I really don't think that Dion is realistic at all, and he makes baseless accusations.

Though I'm not really a Conservative fan (their foreign policies with Asia are...rather...damaged), I'd say Harper has the best leadership and the best ideas and course of action out of all the parties. What Canada needs is to get out of this economic slump, and Harper (who has a degree in some sort of business/economics <- I don't remember which one) has the knowledge to lead us out of it.

NDP is a laugh, hahaha. I don't think they are suitable because they want the high tax/more social services thing, which doesn't really work when the economy is doing so bad right now. Plus, they really seem to support unions (which I am against, because unions hold TOO much power these days), and willing to bend to the unions' will. Or maybe that's just for the BC NDP (Carole James is not a suitable leader xD). Knowing my riding, we'll probably get the Conservative if a lot of people vote, or end up with an NDP.

On a last note, it's a pity that David Emerson won't be re-elected (damn those pro-Liberal extremists in his riding). He was a man that could actually do his job.
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Old 2008-09-09, 09:09   Link #5
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Historically ive been Liberal, and i`ll probably vote liberal this election also. However, I dont see a liberal government really being able to achieve anything, with leadership in tatters. While i would like more spending put to hospitals, i see another conservative minority being the best option right now.

I also find the timing interesting. Seems like Harper is trying to slip this under the radar of the US presidential election, and it seems to work.
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Old 2008-09-09, 16:13   Link #6
Hari Michiru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeedFreedom View Post
Historically ive been Liberal, and i`ll probably vote liberal this election also. However, I dont see a liberal government really being able to achieve anything, with leadership in tatters. While i would like more spending put to hospitals, i see another conservative minority being the best option right now.

I also find the timing interesting. Seems like Harper is trying to slip this under the radar of the US presidential election, and it seems to work.
Same, I've been Liberal, but then, the Liberals aren't doing so hot. Their party is divided, and their leader is well...a wimp. The Conservatives really do seem like they can do something right now, so if I could vote, I'd go with the Conservatives.
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Old 2008-09-10, 01:17   Link #7
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Well if it looks like Harper might get a majority government then I'm going to swap my vote to the NDP. I think his policies are best if we keep him a neutral conservative prime minister, but I don't want to see him have the power to privatize health care services, repeal the Civil Marriage Act (2005) or pass that horrible copyright bill that's been circulating around commons for a while. The best government right now would be a fiscally conservative government, not a socially conservative one.
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Old 2008-09-12, 19:50   Link #8
SeedFreedom
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Well, i just found a pleasant surprise about the election. Due to the early election, Bill C-61, also known as the Canadian DCMA, has been killed. And while the bill could be resurrected in another form, two failed attempts and the fact that it would take a while for them to raise it again makes me smile.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_C-...t,_2nd_Session)

Ack should have read Kaioshin Sama's post more carefully :P
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Old 2008-09-12, 20:13   Link #9
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@Hari Michiru: Harper has a Master's degree in Economics from the University of Calgary. He graduated his high school (yeah, I know, it's only high school, but still) with a 95% grade average or something along those lines. He's damn smart, or at least way smarter than me.

Harper gets criticised for being "cold," and while it is nice to have a lovable, cuddly PM, I think the PM we need right now is someone who simply gets the job done. Come election day, I know who I'm voting for. I've always been partial to the Conservatives, though, so...

@Kaioshin Sama: Harper said, or at least I think he said, he'll leave the Same Sex issue aside. No one is going to touch that. Canadians voiced their opinion on the matter. If he even thinks about doing anything to what we have now, you can bet he won't survive the next election or even the remainder of his term.

Anyway, I'll never consider the NDP for my vote. They're just too far out in left field for my taste. Their position on what we should be doing in Afghanistan, never mind "Taliban Jack," simply leaves a sour taste in my mouth.
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Old 2008-09-12, 22:08   Link #10
Hari Michiru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Brandt View Post
@Hari Michiru: Harper has a Master's degree in Economics from the University of Calgary. He graduated his high school (yeah, I know, it's only high school, but still) with a 95% grade average or something along those lines. He's damn smart, or at least way smarter than me.

Harper gets criticised for being "cold," and while it is nice to have a lovable, cuddly PM, I think the PM we need right now is someone who simply gets the job done. Come election day, I know who I'm voting for. I've always been partial to the Conservatives, though, so...
Thanks for the info (was too lazy to search it up). You kind of have to be cold to an extent when you are a PM. Can't go into emotional depression every time a Canadian soldier dies, for example. If that happened...wouldn't Canada fall apart?

I'd have to agree with you there. We just need someone who does the job well.
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Old 2008-09-18, 19:28   Link #11
SeedFreedom
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Started seeing more Harper ads begin to run with their tagline "Not worth the risk" and i cant help but laugh at how similar that is to the angle Mccain is running with "Not ready to lead".

Any opinions on how effective you think this might be?
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Old 2008-09-18, 19:40   Link #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Kaioshin Sama View Post
Well if it looks like Harper might get a majority government then I'm going to swap my vote to the NDP. I think his policies are best if we keep him a neutral conservative prime minister, but I don't want to see him have the power to privatize health care services, repeal the Civil Marriage Act (2005) or pass that horrible copyright bill that's been circulating around commons for a while. The best government right now would be a fiscally conservative government, not a socially conservative one.
That's exactly how I feel as well. Right now, a conservative minority is a good balance that we can aim for in these hard times.
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Old 2008-09-18, 22:52   Link #13
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Dion is clearly not the leader the liberal party needs against a careful and conniving person like Harper, and while I even actually firmly agree with Harper's stances on military matters and the no doubt important issue of the future of the Arctic regions, I am still more ideologically with the Liberal party on most all other matters of Canadian society and still plan to vote for them for this reason.

I simply cannot bring myself to vote right wing. Harper's minority government worked as smoothly as it did because it was a minority, and he is smart and commanding enough to keep his party firmly in lock step to make sure to carefully govern from the center on most things so he can make the illusion that this is what his party is actually like when it would simply not be the case if he and his gang were givin the free hand of a majority.
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Old 2008-09-19, 15:11   Link #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeedFreedom View Post
Well, i just found a pleasant surprise about the election. Due to the early election, Bill C-61, also known as the Canadian DCMA, has been killed. And while the bill could be resurrected in another form, two failed attempts and the fact that it would take a while for them to raise it again makes me smile.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bill_C-...t,_2nd_Session)

Ack should have read Kaioshin Sama's post more carefully :P
The bill arguably died long before that. Everyone in parliament besides the Conservatives were more or less opposed to it and Jim Prentice essentially pulled a Ted Stevens when he went up in front of parliament to try and sell the bill. He basically got laughed right off the floor by Charlie Angus and the NDP.

If it's to reappear it will have to be in a significantly watered down form with a much narrower scope.
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Old 2008-09-20, 11:15   Link #15
Hari Michiru
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Icehawk View Post
Dion is clearly not the leader the liberal party needs against a careful and conniving person like Harper, and while I even actually firmly agree with Harper's stances on military matters and the no doubt important issue of the future of the Arctic regions, I am still more ideologically with the Liberal party on most all other matters of Canadian society and still plan to vote for them for this reason.

I simply cannot bring myself to vote right wing. Harper's minority government worked as smoothly as it did because it was a minority, and he is smart and commanding enough to keep his party firmly in lock step to make sure to carefully govern from the center on most things so he can make the illusion that this is what his party is actually like when it would simply not be the case if he and his gang were givin the free hand of a majority.
Maybe we can stay a Conservative minority for a while...that'll do good until the Liberals pick out a REAL leader. Then I'll vote Liberals.
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Old 2008-09-21, 22:57   Link #16
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I'm going to vote Conservative again myself.
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Old 2008-09-23, 06:30   Link #17
Samanosuke
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SeedFreedom View Post
Well, i just found a pleasant surprise about the election. Due to the early election, Bill C-61, also known as the Canadian DCMA, has been killed. And while the bill could be resurrected in another form, two failed attempts and the fact that it would take a while for them to raise it again makes me smile.
I can't smile at the idea that a majority conservative government will only make this bill come back again , at full force this time =/

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hari Michiru View Post
Maybe we can stay a Conservative minority for a while...that'll do good until the Liberals pick out a REAL leader. Then I'll vote Liberals.
I can only hope for a conservative minority , and that Dion admits nobody wants him, and leave so we can get a real Liberal leader >_>


anyway , I haven't been following the polls , so who's leading behind the conservatives ? NDP or Liberals ?..or..the BloC xD

I might be tempted to vote NDP too..blargh politics <_<
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Old 2008-09-23, 21:59   Link #18
Shadow Kira01
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I don't know much about Canadian politics, but:

Conservative:
1) High value of the Canadian currency
2) Helping the United States as a means of boosting the economy
3) Soldiers will be going wherever the U.S. goes

Liberals:
1) Weak value of the Canadian currency
2) Allying with China with the idea of containing the U.S.
3) Soldiers will not be going where the U.S. goes
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Old 2008-09-24, 01:42   Link #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shadow Minato View Post
I don't know much about Canadian politics, but:
I haven't really been following Canadian politics either, but you seem to be quite right on that score. Let's break down your points:

Quote:
Conservatives:
1) High value of the Canadian currency
Liberals:
1) Weak value of the Canadian currency
This has little to do with either the government in charge, or even Canadian fiscal policy. The Canadian dollar has risen over the last year, but that gain was mostly in comparison to the US dollar. The two main contributors to this are that the US dollar has fallen drastically compared to every major currency, and because the Canadian stock market is strongly tied to commodity prices. Commodities have been rising, hence the Canadian dollar grows stronger. Both of these are mostly affected by world events rather than any Canadian governmental action.

Besides, Canada is an export country, so it benefits more from a weaker dollar than from a stronger one. Heck, I believe the Conservative government has been trying to keep the dollar lower for the last little while.

Quote:
Conservatives:
2) Helping the United States as a means of boosting the economy
Liberals:
2) Allying with China with the idea of containing the U.S.
I have no idea where you're getting this idea from. While Canada has been trying to diversify its trading partners so that it's no longer so dependent on the status of the American economy, this is not exactly limited to which party is in power. Besides, looking at that mess in Wall Street, doesn't it seem wiser not to put all of one's eggs in that particular basket(case)?

Quote:
Conservatives:
3) Soldiers will be going wherever the U.S. goes
Liberals:
3) Soldiers will not be going where the U.S. goes
I fail to see how Canada sending troops wherever a foreign power directs them is a good thing for anyone other than the U.S. Being an ally isn't a matter of marching lock-step with them. It means to share much the same common principles, but with the willingness to point out where one's ally is making grave mistakes as well. Heck, this lock-step approach probably wouldn't be any good for the U.S. in the long run either - it just promotes adventurism where enthusiasm for such is badly misplaced. *cough*Iraq*cough*
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Last edited by 4Tran; 2008-09-24 at 02:26.
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Old 2008-09-24, 05:53   Link #20
ShuiMei
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People are obviously confused and misinformed about the carbon tax.

For one, it will not put another tax on gas, gas prices are already taxed by the government so M. Dion said that gas prices will not be affected.

Two, though the carbon tax would be a new tax, it is not necessarily a tax increase as the Liberals will be balancing the carbon tax with income tax cuts.

This is a tax shift: the Liberal plan shifts taxes from things like income, profit and investments to pollution and carbon emissions. With that, big industries who emit tonnes of carbon will have the incentive to reduce their carbon emissions and become more efficient so they can pay less taxes and keep more of their profits.

This helps encourage companies to not only become more efficient but also pushes the economy to develop new technologies that are less dependent on carbon, which is not only better for our environment but will help diversify our economy that has traditionally been dependent on resource exploitation. If Canadian businesses start developing new technologies then we can sell these ideas to other countries, and switching to a more diversified, knowledge-based economy would certainly help the economic situation in Canada, especially with the struggling manufacturing industry in Ontario.

So as things we want less of like emissions and pollution are taxed, there will be tax-cuts for thing that help encourage economic growth like income

Quote:
The plan offers the following personal income tax cuts in compensation as people pay more for heating costs, food and other items:

- A 1.5 percentage point rate reduction for the lowest tax bracket (the first $37,885 of taxable income), to 13.5 per cent from 15.
- A one percentage point rate reduction for the second-lowest tax bracket ($37,885-$75,769), to 21 per cent from 22.
- A one percentage point rate reduction for the bracket between $75,769 and $123,184, to 25 per cent from 26.

http://www.cbc.ca/canada/story/2008/...on-carbon.html
The small business tax will go down to 10%, the corporate tax rate to 14% With that, the tax increase you see from the carbon tax will be offset by the income tax cuts.

The Liberals didn't pull this policy out of their hats, a carbon tax has been promoted by both economists and environmentalists and has been implemented in other countries like Finland, Switzerland and Germany. Stephen Harper and Jack Layton have been accusing Stephane Dion of putting out a policy that doesn't work, but many economists and policy analysts have come out and said that it can work.

I know any policy proposal with the word "tax" in it is going to send people into the hills running, but take the time to read and understand the policy before writing it off. I honestly believe that what M. Dion and the Liberals are proposing is a bold, competent plan that will benefit Canadians in the long run.

Moreover, Harper may have a Masters in Economics but his economic policies have been anything but sound. Despite being "Conservative" his government increased government spending levels beyond that of the Liberals and his GST cuts were panned by economists everywhere. It was simply bad economic policy, as the GST cuts mostly benefit those who purchase expensive "big ticket" items like cars and houses and do nothing to encourage economic growth like income tax cuts would.

With that, these GST cuts that did nothing to help the economy caused a huge reduction in government revenue, which has resulted in some careful budgeting in Ottawa where the Liberals provided the federal government with years of surpluses after balancing the budget. The Conservative government's economic policies have brought Canada precariously close to deficit during these unpredictable economic times.

and I think it's an excellent thing that David Emerson won't be running again. One shouldn't be daming "pro-Liberal extremists" in his riding either, it was those "extremists" who got him elected in the first place when he ran under the Liberal banner. He did a great disservice to those who elected him, switching parties only a few weeks after the election to join Harper's cabinet.

The people of his riding elected a Liberal, if not a Liberal they would have voted NDP. They elected him under the Liberal Party name and he turned his back on them for a place in Cabinet. If he had decided to run again, regardless of his competence as a cabinet minister, I think his constituents would be right to vote him out.

Last edited by ShuiMei; 2008-09-24 at 06:07.
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