Dispatches from the Swamp – the ‘make it STOP’ edition

  • Our phone here at the swamp has been ringing off the hook. I think the sheer volume of calls actually managed to kill one of our phones. Why are we so popular you might ask? Well that would be the BC NDP leadership race. Last summer a very nice NDP volunteer came to visit and we all joined the provincial NDP. I have always been very political but I have never actually joined a party. I figured it was finally time to support the party I have voted for in elections for most of my adult life. I was also very much in favour of Carole James[1] stepping down and renewal in the BC NDP. Today after about the 10th call, I actually got a human to talk to and not some disembodied voice. He was very helpful. He explained the voting system to me and told me the best information yet! He said that as soon as we all vote the calls will stop. Two of us have now voted and I just need to get Deb to vote too when she gets home and hopefully we will have peace and quiet again!
  • Most of the dogs are really sick of the rain. Zoe, for example, will go to the door, see that it is raining and then turn on her little Shihtzu heels and walk away.[2] Sawyer is another one who hates the rain. Although with him it is hard to tell what he hates more: the rain or the cold. At night, he sleeps under the duvet preferably suction cupped to one of us. Kiefer on the other hand doesn’t care. I don’t think he even notices wet and cold weather. He goes out and lays down in the pouring rain or snow. The heat, however, is really hard on him.
  • Speaking of dogs, I am sitting here blogging and trying to eat my dinner. I am having chicken tacos for the first time in a while and I am really enjoying them. However, I have Zoe demanding my food. She is growling at me, barking and clawing my leg. I think she is so excited because we have been eating a lot of vegetables lately, which don’t interest her. She is making sure she is getting her fair share today![3] Life is never boring here at the Swamp!

[1] You can see my previous posts about Carole James here, here, here and here.

[2] Shihtzus have a unique way of doing this, as most Shihtzu owners will attest. There is nothing like a stubborn Shihtzu – especially when it comes to getting their feet wet!

[3] Zoe can be rather single-minded in her approach to food. Normally she is quiet and sleepy but when she wants food she is unstoppable.

Why oh why did we join a political party?

Last summer we got a call from a nice lady from the NDP. We agreed to meet with her and in the end we all joined the NDP that evening. As long-time supporters of the NDP, it made sense to us to finally join and support the party somehow. We now have an automatic deduction that comes out of our bank account and we never really gave it another thought.

Then came the provincial leadership and the apparently imminent federal election. Our phone does not stop ringing. We get 3 calls from everyone. Mike Farnsworth campaign calls – 3 times. Adrian Dix’s campaign calls 3 times. We had 9 calls last weekend telling us about the 2 local nominees for the federal election and where to go to cast a vote for a nominee.

Last week I got a call from the federal NDP campaign to make a donation. Apparently the federal wing of the party does not get money from the provincial wing. In the end, I was convinced to donate to the federal campaign as well.

I have to say, I am looking forward to casting a vote for the NDP leadership. I am not sure who I am going to vote for yet.

8:30 pm – and now I have received the Adrian Dix email telling me about the same event they phoned me about!

Things that are seriously pissing me off…

As the number of worldwide protests increase, I am noticing a serious increase in the number of ways other nations are trying to impinge on other nations’ sovereignty. Now, I am not going to debate the sanity of someone like Gaddafi. Clearly any leader of a nation who is willing to sacrifice his citizens does not deserve to be in control. When I hear Barrack Obama saying that Gaddafi should step down. What right does he have to interfere in the sovereignty of Libya or any other country? If/when the United Nations asks for assistance on behalf of Libya or any other country’s people that is the time to step in. Seriously, what if another leader of a country demanded that Obama step down based on the Tea Party protests?

The BC NDP are asking all of their leadership candidates to hand over their passwords to their social media websites as a way to vet the candidates. Seriously, what a huge invasion of privacy not only of the candidates but anyone else they are connected to on these sites. One would think that any potential leadership candidates would be aware of the pitfalls of social media and not post anything that could be used against them. And, if they are that stupid and they post something, then they deserve to be embarrassed by it.

The NDP should be seriously worried

Christy Clark’s victory over the BC Liberal’s ‘old boys network’ last Saturday must be scaring the shit out of the NDP. Christy Clark is a shrewd politician. She won the leadership of the BC Liberal party with only one MLA backing her. The power elite of the party shut her out yet somehow she managed to connect with enough members of the Liberal Party to support her bid for the leadership. She has campaign ability.

So why is she dangerous to the NDP? First of all, even though Clark has a past in politics and indeed the Gordon Campbell government she has been gone long enough that she is not stained to the same degree that Kevin Falcon, George Abbott and Mike de Jong would be. She is not implicated with the improper imposition of the hated HST. Basically she is not the face of the BC Liberals that the NDP thought they would face in the next election.

Christy Clark is fresh. She is a new face for the BC Liberals. She ran an engaged campaign using social media. She is young and an active parent so she resonates well with other parents. Her family first agenda and hopefully the addition of a family holiday for February will resonate well. Clark is charismatic and she is able to command a room unlike other female politicians.

For the NDP, Clark is a huge threat. She is everything that Carole James was not. Clark sounds passionate when James would have sounded shrill. With James being gone now and her likely successor will be a man, the BC Liberals will look much more contemporary and in tune with British Columbians.

Clark also has the opportunity to catch the NDP off guard. She could call a quick election that could catch them unaware. They will need time to come together after their leadership campaign. If the campaign is divisive, which they often are, it could take them even longer. Clark and the BC Liberals have a clear advantage here.

The NDP are going to have to generate some ‘buzz’ around their leadership campaign, which has been largely over-shadowed by the Liberals. Their new leader is going to have to distance themselves quickly from Carole James and show that the NDP is ready to take on the BC Liberals. What looked like a sure-fire victory for the NDP is now anything but sure. If the NDP does not plan well they may find themselves in Opposition for another 4 years.

Stupid Busy

I have been so busy again. I have not even had to time to listen to the news. I know there have been lots of scandals around leadership races, memberships and the RCMP conspiring against Kash Heed. There isn’t even anything funny going on at the Swamp to blog about. I will do better tomorrow!

On another, unrelated note, I am still feeling great!