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View Poll Results: Who would you vote for in the next election?
Conservative 146 32.44%
Liberal 181 40.22%
NDP 83 18.44%
Green Party 20 4.44%
None of the above 20 4.44%
Voters: 450. You may not vote on this poll

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  #2261  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 2:10 AM
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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
Whipping MP's has been part of the parliamentary system since day one.

Whether those moves are dictatorial depends on your political leanings.
No it doesn't. Whipping the vote when you have a majority government to pass legislation that is unpopular in the country is dictatorial.

We elect, in essence, a benevolent dictator. It is the degree to which the dictator is considered benevolent that depends on your political leanings, not the act of vote whipping itself. That is always dictatorial.

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I despised Chretien both for his policy and his white trash personality, so 20 years ago I would have said he was a dictator. I happen to agree with Harper's direction on the three examples you cited:

1) First Nation's leadership is corrupt. If the Feds are providing funding, there must be accountability.
We're looking at the creation of 600+ school boards, each one with at least three federally appointed, salaried members. That sure is a high price to pay to prevent "corruption". If this is the correct way to deal with corrupt leadership, why weren't 22 of Toronto's councillors appointed by Bill Mauro?

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The bad part of the Fair Elections act, namely introducing a loophole on campaign spending was dropped. Tightening ID requirements is a good move. If people can't produce one of ~40 forms of acceptable ID, they are likely trying to commit fraud.
Or poor. Having an address is now mandatory, but many communities (especially reserves) don't have regular addressing, so they can't comply with the laws unless they all vouch for each other. Oh wait, that's gone now.

And Elections Canada cannot encourage people to vote anymore, but apparently that didn't actually work anyway.

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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
Do the Liberals and NDP oppose this because their supporters are less likely to have ID?
Are you implying that poor people don't deserve to vote because they support the parties you don't like?

How would you feel if the Liberals and NDP proposed taking suffrage away from retired people?

How about making ID free? Ontario's Photocard costs $125. I'm sure seniors without licenses will be able to afford that! Elections officers probably don't know that they're required to accept them as if they're driver's licences, anyway.

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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
3) PM's have always chosen Supreme Court candidates. The fact that this one is controversial does not make Harper a dictator.
You're right, it just makes him stupidly stubborn.

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Originally Posted by Doug View Post
It's not like Harper tried to confiscate provincial owned natural resources or declared martial law.
No, but he certainly made it easier for foreign corporations to take advantage of our natural resources with little financial benefit to us (compared to, say, Norway) and his policies on crime are affecting far more than Trudeau's declaration of martial law ever could have.
     
     
  #2262  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 2:16 AM
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Are you sure you aren't a member of the Conservative party Doug? Like come on, Harper is a socially conservative control freak who only really cares about Alberta. The best thing for Ontario and Quebec would be to get on the same page next election and get this idiot out of office.
I've never been a member of any political party and haven't been a Canadian citizen since 2002...but I strongly support the Harper government. I find the notion that Harper is screwing ON and QC laughable. Are those two provinces so narcissistic that all national policies should coddle them?

ON and QC are in trouble for many reasons, most of which are outside the control of the federal government:

1) A currency trading above PPP. Blame this on central banks in the US, Japan and EU debasing their currencies. Australia and NZ are in same boat as Canada. The Bank of Canada is completely independent of the federal government. The feds could send the Loonie down with bad policy (ex. capital controls, massive deficits) but that would present other challenges.

2) Astronomical provincial debt levels with no credible plans to do anything about it. California was considered a basket case, yet its deficit and debt levels never surpassed those of Ontario despite having three times the population. Debt cannot rise faster than GDP without creating a downward spiral. As bad as it is now, it will only get worse after ON's credit rating is cut and global interest rates start to rise.

3) Globally uncompetitive economies. Manufacturing in Canada owed is existence to trade barriers, subsidies and a devalued currency. Not surprisingly, it never evolved beyond branch plant status. A screw gun operator in Ontario is the same as a screw gun operator in Mexico, except the one in Mexico earns a far lower wage. Other high cost economies, Germany being the best example, compete on innovation. Globalization is so far gone, there is no going back.

4) Lack of "animal spirits". Success is always based on entrepreneurship. Instead of blaming the government for not providing handouts or blocking the competition, individuals and companies need to step up to the plate.
     
     
  #2263  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 2:41 AM
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Originally Posted by vid View Post
No it doesn't. Whipping the vote when you have a majority government to pass legislation that is unpopular in the country is dictatorial.

We elect, in essence, a benevolent dictator. It is the degree to which the dictator is considered benevolent that depends on your political leanings, not the act of vote whipping itself. That is always dictatorial.



We're looking at the creation of 600+ school boards, each one with at least three federally appointed, salaried members. That sure is a high price to pay to prevent "corruption". If this is the correct way to deal with corrupt leadership, why weren't 22 of Toronto's councillors appointed by Bill Mauro?



Or poor. Having an address is now mandatory, but many communities (especially reserves) don't have regular addressing, so they can't comply with the laws unless they all vouch for each other. Oh wait, that's gone now.

And Elections Canada cannot encourage people to vote anymore, but apparently that didn't actually work anyway.



Are you implying that poor people don't deserve to vote because they support the parties you don't like?

How would you feel if the Liberals and NDP proposed taking suffrage away from retired people?

How about making ID free? Ontario's Photocard costs $125. I'm sure seniors without licenses will be able to afford that! Elections officers probably don't know that they're required to accept them as if they're driver's licences, anyway.



You're right, it just makes him stupidly stubborn.



No, but he certainly made it easier for foreign corporations to take advantage of our natural resources with little financial benefit to us (compared to, say, Norway) and his policies on crime are affecting far more than Trudeau's declaration of martial law ever could have.
Unpopular is not the same as dictatorial. Depending on your point of view, Chretien was also unpopular. He must have been a dictator as well. So was Mulroney...and Trudeau.

If the Feds are providing the money, it is not only their right to demand accountability but would incompetent to not do so. Since municipalities are the creation of Provinces, only a Provincial government could dissolve a municipal council.

An MP represents a geography, so it is reasonable to expect voters to prove that they live in a certain geography. Are you saying that poor people don't have utility bills, receipts from landlords or stubs from government assistance cheques? Each is an acceptable form of ID. It is irrelevant as the Conservatives backed down and are allowing a person to vouch for the address of one person. I was shocked to learn that vouching was even allowed. I thought it was only something gangsters did in movies.

The Federal government has no jurisdiction over provincial natural resources so its opinion is irrelevant. Companies, foreign or domestic, acquire mineral exploration permits in Alberta at least through an auction, which means they pay exactly the correct amount based on best possible information at that time. Alberta can declare a land sales auction invalid if the number of bids is small. The debate over Alberta "giving away" oil and gas is a pathetic attempt to position income redistribution as a simplistic solution to other province's policy mistakes. Given how well that worked last time, one would need to present an extremely convincing argument as to how well it work in an world where capital is even more globalized. The Norway example is a joke given that its reserves are far less expensive to produce, that has sucked far more barrels out of the ground than Alberta and that it is not a sub-national entity. How much have the Feds socked away in a Sovereign Wealth Fund given the hundreds of billions it has collected for the O&G industry?
     
     
  #2264  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 2:49 AM
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The Liberals can't be trusted with public money.
     
     
  #2265  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 2:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Aylmer View Post
I love how all the experts, media and polls all say the same thing. It's a left-wing conspiracy funded by Joe Oliver's socialist billionaires, don't you know?


And with all their numbers and stats and facts... To quote Prince:




No, sir. I don't listen to the elitists like Democracy Watch or the Canadian Civil Liberties Association; I listen to my gut and the man on the street (though not too many men on the street, lest it becomes an elitist statistic.. Did you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than in your brain? My gut tells me so.
Your "gut" is based on your experiences. It is not perceptive enough to reach the whole country. Nobody can do that anymore. Sources of information have proliferated. It would be impossible to reach conclusions as it would be impossible to reach out to all the blogs, forums, social media, news sites etc. Most pollsters still rely on sample sizes in the high hundreds to low thousands of people contacted through land lines. Justin Trudeau would likely poll very high based on Facebook likes from teenage girls who think he is dreamy, maybe even more so than Bieber, or teenage boys who'd like to smoke up with him.
     
     
  #2266  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:59 AM
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The Liberals can't be trusted with public money.
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  #2267  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 5:45 AM
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I've never been a member of any political party and haven't been a Canadian citizen since 2002...but I strongly support the Harper government. I find the notion that Harper is screwing ON and QC laughable. Are those two provinces so narcissistic that all national policies should coddle them?

ON and QC are in trouble for many reasons, most of which are outside the control of the federal government:

1) A currency trading above PPP. Blame this on central banks in the US, Japan and EU debasing their currencies. Australia and NZ are in same boat as Canada. The Bank of Canada is completely independent of the federal government. The feds could send the Loonie down with bad policy (ex. capital controls, massive deficits) but that would present other challenges.

2) Astronomical provincial debt levels with no credible plans to do anything about it. California was considered a basket case, yet its deficit and debt levels never surpassed those of Ontario despite having three times the population. Debt cannot rise faster than GDP without creating a downward spiral. As bad as it is now, it will only get worse after ON's credit rating is cut and global interest rates start to rise.

3) Globally uncompetitive economies. Manufacturing in Canada owed is existence to trade barriers, subsidies and a devalued currency. Not surprisingly, it never evolved beyond branch plant status. A screw gun operator in Ontario is the same as a screw gun operator in Mexico, except the one in Mexico earns a far lower wage. Other high cost economies, Germany being the best example, compete on innovation. Globalization is so far gone, there is no going back.

4) Lack of "animal spirits". Success is always based on entrepreneurship. Instead of blaming the government for not providing handouts or blocking the competition, individuals and companies need to step up to the plate.
Personally I find it a bit sad how quickly people are to immediately blame the government for any and all problems. Is it the federal government's responsibility that companies like RIM were not competitive enough in the global marketplace that they ended up laying off thousands of employees?

It my opinion it's not the federal governments function to create jobs. If there are specific policies the federal government is implementing that hinder our ability to compete both locally and globally in the business marketplace (currency valuation is one such criticism we could possibly make), let's talk about those policies, but don't skirt the responsibility of creating jobs to the government. That's our responsibility as citizens, not the responsibility of some abstract government bureaucrat.

The argument that QC and ON economies are not doing as well as they should therefore we need to elect federal government representation to help them is just backwards.
     
     
  #2268  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 6:30 AM
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I think people in general are far too obsessed with the individual at the head of the party. The individual doesn't matter. Justin Trudeau is simply a shiny new face on the oldest political party in Canada. The polices of the party matters, not the guy who happens to be elected at the time. It's why so many people were disappointed with Obama as a president. They thought they were getting change, but in the end they just got 8 more years of the same old democratic party with the same old democratic party policies.

The liberals have a certain philosophy of government. They want the federal government to be all things to all people. Have a problem? The federal government will be there to help you, whether it's creating jobs or fixing you oatmeal in the morning. Justin Trudeau, for all his charisma and shiny charm, hasn't offered much in the way of plan beyond a return to a more interventionist federal government - the kind the liberal government has been pushing for almost 150 years.

You can dislike Harper as a person, you can say he had several missteps with policies, he had misjudgements with cabinet members, and he had several failings as a prime minister - but can you honestly say that the problem with the government since he took over is that the federal government hasn't been interventionist enough? I can't, and therefore, I can't support the liberal party.
     
     
  #2269  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 7:45 AM
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You can dislike Harper as a person, you can say he had several missteps with policies, he had misjudgements with cabinet members, and he had several failings as a prime minister - but can you honestly say that the problem with the government since he took over is that the federal government hasn't been interventionist enough? I can't, and therefore, I can't support the liberal party.
So you're saying you would take any government as long as they are not interventionist. You are willing to overlook many 'shortcomings' as long as they stay out of your affairs.

I am really trying to understand this point of view, because it is just so foreign to me. Governments have a keen role in every aspect of our lives, regardless of where on the spectrum you are. I think good right wing governments are just as interventionist, it's just not as apparent to the average citizen.

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Originally Posted by geotag277 View Post
I think people in general are far too obsessed with the individual at the head of the party. The individual doesn't matter.
Normally I would agree with you. But Harper is a different animal. He has firmly branded this government as his own. Note they call themselves 'the Harper Government', not the Canadian government, or even the Conservative Government. He of anyone sets the tone, right from top to bottom.

Perhaps in more democratic, inclusive or real grass roots governments, the leader doesn't matter as much. Maybe if the leader groomed people of competence around them to be equals, successors or real contributors to the whole instead of just carrying out directives. Then, yes, I would agree that the leader wasn't as important. But Harper has styled himself in quite a different way.

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Originally Posted by geotag277 View Post
You can dislike Harper as a person...
And no one cares if Harper is a nice person. Maybe you don't get it, people aren't thinking "I'm not voting for Harper because he's not a nice man." They are thinking "I'm not voting for Harper because he's a bad Prime Minister." So, I think your use of terms like 'missteps', 'misjudgements', 'mistakes' might be accurate descriptions for you, but not for me. I'm pretty sure you're not interested in why I feel this way, so I won't go into detail.

But, whether or not I personally have gained or lost is neither here nor there. I have done fairly well, but I also look to my neighbours, my friends, my family and my countrymen and ask how have they lost or gained.

Perhaps that is where the difference in opinion arises -- I believe in the Canadian context that government policy should promote the virtues of fairness, equality and duty as much as the values of freedom, opportunity and prosperity.
     
     
  #2270  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 2:52 PM
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Perhaps in more democratic, inclusive or real grass roots governments, the leader doesn't matter as much.
Not in Canada.

At election time most people vote for the party that has the leader they want to see as Prime Minister, not the best candidate in their constituency. Heck, that's what I do - I voted Conservative because I think Harper is a great Prime Minister, even though the Conservative MP in my riding is a totally incompetent idiot.

There's far too much focus on the leader in our politics.
     
     
  #2271  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 3:09 PM
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There's far too much focus on the leader in our politics.
This is why I'd vote for any party that made it a pledge to let MPs always, ALWAYS vote independently.

We have no choice but to ignore our MPs and vote for the PM we want, because at the end of the day any important vote is drawn along party lines, or in other words how the PM wants things to go. The sheer concept of voting for an MP because of how they will vote in Parliament is absurd in modern Canadian politics.

And as an aside, voter ID laws are typical heavy-handed nanny-state government, trying to solve a problem that literally doesn't exist. Voter fraud in Canada is so insignificant that it can't even be detected statistically.
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  #2272  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:00 PM
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So you're saying you would take any government as long as they are not interventionist. You are willing to overlook many 'shortcomings' as long as they stay out of your affairs.

I am really trying to understand this point of view, because it is just so foreign to me. Governments have a keen role in every aspect of our lives, regardless of where on the spectrum you are. I think good right wing governments are just as interventionist, it's just not as apparent to the average citizen.
That's not exactly what I said and I don't think it's so hard to understand as long as you take a more charitable view of the interpretation of my words. I understand that in politics it's common to take an "us versus them" approach and to feign absolute ignorance about how anyone could conceivably support "the other guy", but it is a tiring and silly tactic that only serves to brush any conversation with extremist politics, which are on display in this thread.

The fact is, no matter what leader we elect, they will make mistakes. Trudeau will stumble and falter on his way to erecting the perfect interventionalist federal government, likely just as much as Harper has struggled trying to build a CPC style government. Leaders and parties will make mistakes, that's a given. My point is that the important things beyond the minor mistakes these entities make is the philosophy of government they espouse and the practical implementation of such a government. I don't agree with the liberal philosophy of government and that is more important with who is in the driver's seat.

Quote:
Normally I would agree with you. But Harper is a different animal. He has firmly branded this government as his own. Note they call themselves 'the Harper Government', not the Canadian government, or even the Conservative Government. He of anyone sets the tone, right from top to bottom.

Perhaps in more democratic, inclusive or real grass roots governments, the leader doesn't matter as much. Maybe if the leader groomed people of competence around them to be equals, successors or real contributors to the whole instead of just carrying out directives. Then, yes, I would agree that the leader wasn't as important. But Harper has styled himself in quite a different way.

And no one cares if Harper is a nice person. Maybe you don't get it, people aren't thinking "I'm not voting for Harper because he's not a nice man." They are thinking "I'm not voting for Harper because he's a bad Prime Minister." So, I think your use of terms like 'missteps', 'misjudgements', 'mistakes' might be accurate descriptions for you, but not for me. I'm pretty sure you're not interested in why I feel this way, so I won't go into detail.

But, whether or not I personally have gained or lost is neither here nor there. I have done fairly well, but I also look to my neighbours, my friends, my family and my countrymen and ask how have they lost or gained.

Perhaps that is where the difference in opinion arises -- I believe in the Canadian context that government policy should promote the virtues of fairness, equality and duty as much as the values of freedom, opportunity and prosperity.
The rest of your post is simply political extremism which, in my opinion, does nothing to advance any kind of conversation about anything and can be safely ignored.
     
     
  #2273  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:06 PM
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Not in Canada.

At election time most people vote for the party that has the leader they want to see as Prime Minister, not the best candidate in their constituency. Heck, that's what I do - I voted Conservative because I think Harper is a great Prime Minister, even though the Conservative MP in my riding is a totally incompetent idiot.

There's far too much focus on the leader in our politics.
A much bigger problem with our government than this silly "Trudeau vs Harper" nonsense that is talked about far too little is the lack of competition among federal ridings and general voter apathy where barely half the population votes. It's a situation that guarantees Canadians aren't being properly represented and even worse, like freeweed said, we get incompetent representation wholly because of broad brush party branding.
     
     
  #2274  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:17 PM
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In what world is Harper not interventionist?
     
     
  #2275  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:30 PM
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In what world is Harper not interventionist?
Well, he's really keen on handing over certain law enforcement abilities to private corporations, so in one sense he's trying to keep government out of our personal lives. Government that is bound by law to respect things such as privacy and the legal system, but hey, minor details. The point is, it's less government involvement! Hooray!

I wonder what stage the latest perversion of our copyright laws is at...an electorate that overwhelmingly says FUCK NO every single time and yet Harper's gov't keeps pushing it through. I love it when government not only doesn't listen, admits that they don't give a damn, and then tries to railroad through things that are by all objective measures bad for their constituents.
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  #2276  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:32 PM
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In what world is Harper not interventionist?
I'm certainly not the one to argue that the problem with the government over the last few years has been that it hasn't been interventionist enough.
     
     
  #2277  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 4:46 PM
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The rest of your post is simply political extremism
"Extremism", "Extremist". Another favourite set of words used by the Harper Government to describe the views of people that disagree with him. You wag your finger at people making it an "us vs. them", but that is the way Steven Harper has shaped the whole political framework since he took power. No one has forced partisanship to this level before him. "I make the rules." "I couldn't care less about what they think." Those aren't missteps. That's a bad attitude and bad leadership. He's supposed to be governing for all Canadians, not just the ones that voted him in.
     
     
  #2278  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 5:06 PM
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"Extremism", "Extremist". Another favourite set of words used by the Harper Government to describe the views of people that disagree with him. You wag your finger at people making it an "us vs. them", but that is the way Steven Harper has shaped the whole political framework since he took power. No one has forced partisanship to this level before him. "I make the rules." "I couldn't care less about what they think." Those aren't missteps. That's a bad attitude and bad leadership. He's supposed to be governing for all Canadians, not just the ones that voted him in.
So many words to say nothing at all, you remind me of Justin Trudeau

This vain attempt to try to paint Stephen Harper as a big bad evil dictator wolf who has totally altered the Canadian political landscape with a fascist iron fist is just silly, immature, and most importantly counter productive.

Stephen Harper doesn't matter. Justin Trudeau doesn't matter. Upon election Justin will have a laundry list of liberal party advisors ensuring that the liberal party continues the liberal party philosophy of government. That's really what it comes down to. I don't think Justin is evil, I don't think he's incompetent, I don't have any ill will towards him as a person, he is simply a cog in the wheel of the storied Liberal Party of Canada and I don't agree with their philosophy of governance.

That isn't us versus them, that's practical politics.
     
     
  #2279  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 5:16 PM
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So many words to say nothing at all, you remind me of Justin Trudeau

This vain attempt to try to paint Stephen Harper as a big bad evil dictator wolf who has totally altered the Canadian political landscape with a fascist iron fist is just silly, immature, and most importantly counter productive.

Stephen Harper doesn't matter. Justin Trudeau doesn't matter. Upon election Justin will have a laundry list of liberal party advisors ensuring that the liberal party continues the liberal party philosophy of government. That's really what it comes down to. I don't think Justin is evil, I don't think he's incompetent, I don't have any ill will towards him as a person, he is simply a cog in the wheel of the storied Liberal Party of Canada and I don't agree with their philosophy of governance.

That isn't us versus them, that's practical politics.
You're not really saying anything either. You're just stating that you don't like liberal governance, and that who leads the party isn't important. Neither really add anything of substance to the conversation, so we can safely ignore that too. Your extended use of hyperbole just detracts in your attempts to make any credible point. But thanks for your input!
     
     
  #2280  
Old Posted May 12, 2014, 5:35 PM
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You're not really saying anything either. You're just stating that you don't like liberal governance, and that who leads the party isn't important. Neither really add anything of substance to the conversation, so we can safely ignore that too. Your extended use of hyperbole just detracts in your attempts to make any credible point. But thanks for your input!
Unfortunately I can't talk specifics because Justin Trudeau does not talk specifics. A good related recent example that epitomizes the Liberal party approach is the recent proposal of the Ontario Liberal Party for an Ontario Pension Plan - the government dictating how and in what manner everyone should be saving for retirement by taking your money and using it the way the government sees fit. A proposal that will for all intents and purposes have a return that doesn't even keep up with inflation. This is the philosophy of government that the Liberal party generally pursues, and I don't agree with it. The Conservative government takes the approach that it is an individuals responsibility to save for retirement and manage their own paycheck in that regard and I agree.
     
     
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