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Youth vote and the future

Dropping my daughter off at daycare yesterday I heard a news story about efforts by Elections Canada to mobilize the ‘youth vote’, that politically elusive 18-25 group. For good reason, every major political party is salivating over the prospect of biting into this demographic. But Elections Canada seems to think that the problem of getting them out to vote is a merely technical one, something that can be solved by allowing for on-line voting, for instance.

Campaign Kick-Off

A great crowd turned out to kickoff Byron's campaign as Green Party Kitchener-Centre candidate for the 2011 general federal election. 

Byron gave a great talk on the vision of the Green Party, how we have an obligation to take into account future generations and not just plan for today, that all issues are environmental issues.  We should not accept the status quo and choose between the lesser of two evils, that it is time to vote Green.

Fear and Control

So far, this campaign has been dominated by the twin demons of fear and control. The problem with succumbing to these demons, which it looks like we are in the process of doing, is that they stifle political and social creativity. Here are three examples from the current campaign.

Green Party calls for common ground on high speed rail

SIDNEY, B.C. - The Green Party of Canada has released its second policy proposal in its challenge to all parties to go positive and find common ground in an effort to keep voters engaged.

“We are calling on all parties to agree that Canada will benefit environmentally, socially and economically from investing in high-speed rail on major corridors across the country.  Fewer voters will stay at home on election day because they feel disgusted with the whole political process if we can show them some cooperation between parties,” said Green Leader Elizabeth May.
 

First Green Premier Elected in Germany

OTTAWA - State elections today in Germany saw the Green Party win almost a quarter of the popular vote, coming in just ahead of the Social Democrats in Baden-Württemberg. The two parties will together form a State government, with Winfried Kretschmann becoming the first Green Premier in world history.

Tar Sands- Domestic and Therefore Ethical?

Byron Williston will presented the arguments made by the oil and gas industry, and their supporters, in favour of expansion of the tar sands and why those arguments fail. The unconstrained development and expansion of the tar sands is, in fact, morally unjustifiable.The conclusion? We should see ourselves as duty-bound to take a much more cautious approach to the management of this resource than is currently the case.Byron Williston is an Associate Professor and Chair of the Department of Philosophy at Wilfrid Laurier University and he is the Green Party Candidate for Kitchener Centre.

Leaders Debates

The Old Boys’ Club is at it again. Elizabeth May has been denied entry into the televised leaders’ debates.

Since the decision all major party leader's have either said they would like her in the debate or are not against the idea.

What kind of democracy excludes a party with the support of one million of its citizens? What kind of democracy allows a handful of TV executives to decide that a party that only runs candidates in one province has more right to be in a national leaders’ debate than a party with candidates in every riding?

In the last election, your voices won Elizabeth her rightful place in the debates. We can’t believe that we have to ask you to rally on her behalf yet again. But we do.

  1. Visit http://demanddemocraticdebates.ca to sign our petition, donate, and more!
  2. Vote in CBC’s poll on whether Elizabeth should be invited to the leaders’ debates
  3. Sign the Petition at demanddemocraticdebates.ca (which is endorsed by the Green Party of Canada).
  4. Email the consortium members CBC, CTV, Global, TVA and Radio Canada.
    1. CTV: programming@ctv.ca
    2. CBC: ombudsman@cbc.ca
    3. Global TV: viewercontact.globalnational@globaltv.com
    4. TVA: info@tva.ca
    5. Radio Canada: ombudsman@radio-canada.ca
  5. Send emails to:
    1. Stephen Harper pm@pm.gc.ca,
    2. Jack Layton Layton.J@parl.gc.ca,
    3. Michael Ignatieff Ignatieff.M@parl.gc.ca and
    4. Gilles Duceppe Duceppe.G@parl.gc.ca

    Tell them to press the networks to include Elizabeth May.

  6. Visit the Facebook pages of the party leaders, and write on their walls that you want them to demand Elizabeth May be in the debates.
  7. Tweet your outrage! Use the hashtag #EMayIn.
  8. Post about this on Facebook.
  9. Tell your friends and family!

Why your vote DOES count! - Misconceptions about voting

Voting for the Green Party of Canada would be throwing your vote.
One vote out of tens of thousands won’t make a difference.

These are misconceptions and couldn’t be further from the truth. There is no better way to show support for any politician than at the polls. Our member of parliament, Stephen Woodworth won his seat by only 339 votes, which translates into only 2 votes per poll. 2 votes, that’s it! Even closer was the Kitchener Waterloo riding that won by only 17 votes!

Attack Ads

In recent elections (and in between elections) the number of attack ads shown in Canadian media has increased. Many people decry their existence and claim that they hurt the Canadian election process.

Why then are they used? Unfortunately, because they work.

Security Policy Rationale; Why the F-35 Lighting II Joint Strike Fighter?

The Conservative government’s announcement to purchase the controversial F-35 Lightning II Joint Strike Fighter is again making news. A recent incident calling for the scrambling of Canadian CF-18 fighter planes to escort a cargo plane carrying suspicious packages through Canadian airspace has rehashed the debate surrounding the need for Canada to update its’ fleet. The refurbished CF-18s will near the end of lifespan beginning in 2017. The question of the purchase of new aircraft is not so much if we should buy fighter jets, but which fighter jets we should buy?

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