Saturday, March 22, 2008

Bring Me Your Poor...Your Huddled Masses, or at Least Your Disgruntled Liberals

Given the varied opinion out there about the Liberal party and Mr. Dion, I thought it might be productive to try to focus on a course of action that bridges the divergence we have seen of late, specifically on Liberal blogs.

My thinking is this. If we are witnessing so many varying opinions in this medium, there is a good chance that mood is being mirrored at the grass roots level as well as the more established echelons of the party.

If that is true, perhaps we could examine productive ways to build bridges and develop a consensus. If we can do that, then I suggest so can those who are intimately involved.

So, what I'm asking for is your best suggestion(s) on a course of action going forward. What ideas do you have that could both achieve unity (something that we're being told is lacking) and a common message without splintering us? What conditions do you believe we need in order to fell the government and how best do you believe we could win an election? How could we engage media? By that I mean, develop a narrative that they would be interested in following?

Well, you get the idea of what I'm looking for.

Respectfully, I'm not interested in looking backwards, nor am I interested in glib 'change the leader' comments. I'm looking to rational people to provide a rational perspective.

Obviously comments are open to all, including those from other parties, but if your comments do not add to the discussion, I'll delete them. That said I'm not out to censor any one's voice. Those who have come to know me, realise that I do not delete comments. In this case however, I simply would like to have a productive discussion which of course will include statements of discontent. Dissenters won't be deleted. Nonsense will be.

I know that readers of this blog are spread across the country, which always brings interesting perspectives. Both local and national concerns are reflected in your reactions and I think that is an important part of the discussion because imo, it reflects the reality of what the 'higher-up's' are faced with.

Anyway, I look forward to your contribution because I believe there is an answer and I think this forum is a great place to get to it.


Anonymous said...

I would like to see Mr.Dion,co-host town hall meetings with enviormental groups all across the country.

Karen said...

How do we get media involved Wendy? Your idea is a good one, but only if it brings about Dion's credibility again.

He is credible of course, but that message has been taken over by the Con's and media.

How do we make it known?

Anonymous said...

I beleive that if as liberal supportors make ourselves more visible in setting, like town hall meetings as suggested, and begin to have constructive dialoque and being engaged in the conversation.
Chossing to be engaged. bringing our diverse voices and opinions together would show that we can be more than what the Con's and media is putting out as the message.
We should not wait for others to define what is credible, but we maintain using all the means and communications availalble to create the conditions to generate the energy that can get behind the leader so that with all of us we can begin to define who we are.
I have always found quite fascinating that between the casting of our vote, the grassroot or the supportors are not being asked to be more engaged in creating and maintaining our image, our message on an ongoing basis. There are so many issues and such a myriad of difference in how we approach the full spectrum of what as a Canadian I beleive in, the Economy, Enviroment,the people and the support that is needed to be productive ann literate.
I am an over 55 and I found that use of this communcation medium is allowing to express ideas that have in the past only remained thoughts.
The ability to meet and speak with others like minded individuals seems to more important in large urban centres, as I found that in the small prarie town I grew up in discussing politics and who you supported was far simpler to have a talk about and/or have a debate that make one feel engaged in the process between elections.
Ther is no magic bullets.
Angelle in Van.

Anonymous said...

KNB, you don't have to lift a finger to "make it known"............the media is a good friend of yours. However even the media has it's limit to proping up an old dog with no tricks.

Forget about the CBC, they are on thin ice for their spending fiascos, and have began a hiatus on poking fun at Harper. They are seriously scared of being shut down by the conservatives.

I personally have given about 700$ dollars to the conservative government, I am a young engineer, with little funds. Our grass roots is strong, and the self entitled liberals will never have that.

P.S. - I want to clarify that in no way do I dislike Stephan Dion, he is way cool in my books. I wouldn't touch Rae with a 20 ft hockey stick..........Ignatieff is who the party should be proping up. I have not read the Liberal constitution, but I would try to get Ignatieff (a centerist in my opinion, and I know some will post after me calling him a "neo-con in hiding)in such a way that there would be no Convention, costing more money, and increasing member tension, and horrible P.R..

Happy Easter.....Pax Christi

Anonymous said...

I really think , there are too many rumors, that say Dion must step down. Whomever they are, it does not help things. I think Dion would be just fine, given half a chance to show himself, should not appoint anymore people for the election..he has bad luck doing this. Liberals do not stab their leader in he back, usually. If the Quebec Liberals are having lot of trouble...what gives ? I hope they have people picked out in all the ridings for the next election..does anybody know?

Anonymous said...

Leaving partisanship at the door.......Dion in my opinion is a very likeable character, his English has way improved since the past year, and he spent a fair bit of time getting hardened in the kiln. I think it would be better if he steped down one level (does lib doctrine allow?). I am not doubting his intelligence, surely there are other things he can do in the party. For goodness sake Liberals, if you let Rae get close to that position, mark my words, it is finito for the Liberals as we know it. I can see the storm coming.

Karen said...

Angelle, merci.

I'm going to accumulate your brilliant contribution with those who follow.

Karen said...

babylonian...Ignatieff is the furthest thought from neo-con. Even we on the left of centre of the party do not view him as that.

However, if you are suggesting that media leans left, I'd suggest you are either on drugs or you need some.

That hoary claim holds no sway here.

Karen said...

Anon @ 10:30...there seems to be an awful lot of ridings not dealt with.

Appointments? Yes, it's uncomfortable, but it's in our constitution. I defend it, but I understand why it's disputed.

Anonymous said...

Well, he seems to get along with the conservatives pretty well now and then.............

RuralSandi said...

They need a new slogan. Richer, Fairer, Greener just doesn't cut it - it doesn't roll of the tongue very well.

And, they have to face their problems directly. I notice from various writings, for example, Ignatieff is the only one that isn't falling into the spin cycle with regards to the by-elections - he's facing the truth and I think the rest should.

Rae worries me - he just won't get Ontario votes (one riding is one thing) but the whole province is another.

Actually, Rae came in 4th during the leadership race - that should tell them something.

I liked Dryden's "I want my Canada Back" slogan.

Anonymous said...

Change....Change you can believe in.

Red Canuck said...

KNB - The question you pose is a huge one, and seems to grow bigger every day. I'm not sure I have the answer, or even a good approach at this point.

I guess my main gripe these days is that everything seems so reactionary. Perhaps that's the Opposition's lot in life, but I feel like the Liberals have lost a sense of direction, other than some vague commitment to the environment. I suspect arriving at a strong concensus position on multiple issues (environment, taxes/economy, foreign policy, crime, education, helthcare, immigration, Quebec, etc etc) is hard in a "big tent" party that includes disaffected Conservatives and former NDP'ers.

But I get the sense that for all of their failings, the Cons have had the advantage of being predictable and steadfast in setting the agenda. Granted, they are the gov't, but the Libs have taken on the appearance of headscratching reactionaries rather than a strong oppposition. I fear they are too worried about left/right divisions within their own caucus to 'rock the boat'. I don't know how to solve this problem, other than to make the very motherhood-y statement that Dion needs to define clearly what the party stands for (by amongst other things listening to grassroots members), and allow those in the caucus who disagree to simply leave.

Anonymous said...

Building bridges assumes that both sides want to build the link. I am not too sure that Rae (or to a certain extent Ignatieff) have that as a top priority at this point. Having Dion win an election is not in their political interests because it would postpone the leadership race they both want to happen. Rae was a party leader and a government leader and knows very well the key people he needs on side. I think it is because of him and his supporters there has been no election despite Dion and Ignatieff wanting one. I think Rae will continue to undermine Dion and hope for an election in about 6 months and a Dion loss. By then Rae would have control of the party and pretty well assured of a victory at the leadership convention. All this to say, the bridges needing to be built have nothing to do with Liberals and Dion, but Rae Liberals and Ignatieff Liberals so that the coming battle won't be excessively destructive - Dion is done and he can expect no support from either of the two main contenders once they start focusing on each other.

Karen said...

Thanks for all of your ideas and comments.

I think I want to come back to this as time goes on, because I suspect things are going to move quickly when parliament comes back.