Thursday, October 26, 2006

Where is Our Economic Nationalism

We have seen a number of prominent Canadian companies go into foreign ownership : INCO, Hudson Bay Company, Falconbridge, Sleeman Brewery, Intrawest, Fairmont Hotels, Dofasco, Domtar, CP Ships and Vincor. I believe this trend is undermining our ability as country to control our economic destiny. There is the argument that companies need to be large enough to survive and grow in to days global competitive market. There is also the rationalization that the jobs will remain in Canada with a level of management and that we will keep the spin off jobs that boost other sectors of our economy. However, I believe that as the final ownership leaves the country so does the final decision making power and the profits that will effect future generations for our country. Investment decision about where those profits will be used to move the company forward will not have the same Canadian flavour to them. In the long run this is a major loss to Canada.
Is it not time for us to revisit and review our regulator process dealing with take-overs if Canada is to maintain control over decision making that effects its long term economic viability?

Monday, October 23, 2006

Shades of Mackenzie King

Was I dreaming or did Ignatieff really refer to his mother as a source of validation ?

I was upset by the lack of respect shown by some at the debate. As liberals we must work together to rejuvenate and strengthen he party not be divisive.

Friday, October 20, 2006

Cough Cough,

2050 will be too late to see if the predicted results will work. Why can't we have targets for all sectors now??

Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Canada Steps Backwards
I was ashamed by Canada's representatives at the recent international meeting to ratify the Rotterdam Accord. They did an injustice to our country's reputation. We were instrumental in having the accord stopped. It means we have stopped an attempt to have shipments of asbestos labelled with warning about its hazardous health risks when another country imports it. Asbestos is a lethal cancer causing product. Canada should be showing environmental leadership to protect others by having information about dangerous products shared so importing countries can make safe decisions rather than with holding information in order to support an industry polluting our environment.

Friday, October 13, 2006

Renewal Time

After all has been said and done it is time to make my predictions about who should win the leadership race. I predicate my thoughts on the hope the party truly wants to renew itself rather than just win the next election. I divided the candidates into two tiers.
The first group of Brison, Dryden, Hall-Findlay and Volpe along with the undeclared will grease for the balloting. I think of this group of four that Hall-Findlay is the one who is the best speaker and has add most to the debate of issues and will give the best speech on Friday at the conference just as Green did in 1968. Volpe will have enough votes to go to the second ballot and will stay. After the second vote Volpe will be off the ballot. The honorable thing for Volpe to do would be to say he has given it his all; he is staying neutral and releasing his candidates to go to their second choice.
The second tier of Dion, Ignatieff, Kennedy, and Rae is where the hard decisions need to be made. Each of these candidates has a solid base of delegates their speeches on Friday will be critical to building future support. This is their opportunity to give their vision Canada’s future and how they will achieve it.

. Kennedy’s weakness is his French, lack of support in Quebec and his youth. It is my expectation that these will stop him garnering delegates after the first ballot. His strength is in Ontario where he has a machine in place from his try at the provincial leadership and Alberta his home province. He has the opportunity to be King maker and set himself up for the next leadership contest.

Ignatieff has the most support at this time and is the darling of the English press but he is no Trudeau. He has been out of the country not involved in the governing of the country and is just as conservative on many issues as Harper. The last point will mean it will be hard to have a policy that is truly distinguishable form the Tories. If Ignatieff does not aggressively add to his support on the second ballot he will loose. That could mean an anything but Iggy coalition.

Rae has support across the country. He is bilingual. His weakness is his late conversion to the liberals and the memory in Ontario of his days leading the NDP government. He has a strong platform and would be able to deliver a clear alternative to Harper. He has the potential to show growth after the first ballot..

Dion has support across the country although he was not the winner in any province. He is from Quebec and brings considerable experience to the position. His honesty and integrity have not been questioned. He has good potential to show growth after the first ballot. He also has strong platform with the most clearly articulated platform on the environment which I believe will be a crucial issue in the next election.

I see a coalition between Dion and Rae as the best hope for the Liberal party’s future. They would bring the party back to a policy that is more caring consensus building. A policy that honors civil rights and looks to have a just Canadian society where our institutions and social programmes are honored.

It will depend on whether Dion or Rae shows the most growth on the third ballot and how Kennedy views where to throw his support to best serve his future to see who will be on the run off against Igntieff on the final ballot.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

On McGuinty and Clean Air

I watched the actions of McGuinty last week as he attacked the idea that the Harper Government might impose regulations on the automotive sector with considerable distress. During the last campaign I remember his promise to protect the environment and thought “Oh a breath of fresh air” How I was deceived. He really has no zeal for environmental protection. His reaction to the suggestion of emission regulations was to immediately attack the whole concept that we need to control emissions from motor vehicles. His claim it will cost Ontario too much as it will hurt the auto sector.

Mr McGuinty get with the evidence. In the GTA we have smog alerts. We have harmed lakes. We have people dieing in Southern Ontario every year from repertory problems directly related to air quality. It cost us millions every year in tax dollars to pay for the medical cost as a result of respiratory illness. We loose millions from the economy as a result of additional sick time employees need to recover from respiratory problems.

Other jurisdictions are moving on this issue with vigor. I think we in Ontario should be working harder to get all vehicle emissions reduced within a strict time table and strong standards, much like California. These regulations should go further than Harper’s proposal plan. Well Mr. McGuinty if you think we should keep going the way we are then I feel you are a politician for the wrong century. It is probably the smog in down town Toronto that blurs you vision of what is needed for a safe clean future.

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