Election extended as struggling Conservatives look for Advantage



 Stephen Harper has just created the most expensive election in Canadian history and the longest one in living memory.One can assume that he is feeling the heat of dropping poll numbers. Elections are normally 4 to 6 weeks. This year’s election will be 11 weeks.

This allows the Conservative Party to spend up to $30 million more on the election (every day extended gives them more room to spend) and they have a lot of more money than the other parties. The spending advantage is seeing widely as the reason for the longer campaign. All of this is occurring after the Federal government spent millions on Conservative friendly ads (this would be your money being spent reader, tax money). The Federal contract for advertisement finished at the end of July, and Harper called the election over the long weekend.Continue Reading

Ranked Ballot Reform is Not Good for Our Cities


Electoral reform is needed in Canada. We have majorities in the Canadian Parliament and in the Ontario Legislature due to our first past the post system of elections when no party has won a majority of the vote.

We also have very large numbers of people not voting, making any government suspect to questions about legitimacy. Those are real problems. Ranked ballot reform is not the same as Proportional representation reform and would actually make these problems worse.

Unfortunately, there is a big push now to get our cities to take this system on.

What it would, were it to be implemented would be to create a system that actually reduces the number of people that vote over the long term, as well as making it easier to stay elected for incumbents. Neither of these two things are good for democracy.Continue Reading

The Senate in Canada: A Throwback that Needs to be Abolished


This fall the Duffy Senate scandal trial will be back on the news, once again highlighting everything that is wrong with our country’s unelected chamber of Parliament. Canada does many things well, but the Senate has not been one of them.

It is a bit laughable that in the 21st century we still have an unelected body of people approving our laws and running our government.

The original concept for the creation of the Senate was that Canada, as a new country, required a sober second chamber to temper the will of the House of Commons. In today’s words, what that really means is that the rich and politically connected do not feel that the “commoners” would make the right decisions and needed a second opinion. Continue Reading