Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Policy Voids - Real and Imagined

As a Kennedy supporter, I am always a little dismayed when people say that Gerard has a deficit of policy out there. In reality, Kennedy is basically the only candidate with anything new to say that is more than just platitudes. A quick browse of the 5 real contenders for Stornaway's websites (Kennedy, Ignatieff, Dion, Rae and Dryden) reveals that the deficits lie with the other candidates.

Dryden- A host of platitudes. All no more than 500 words and certainly nothing that we haven't run on in the last 13 years

Rae- A hodgepodge of reactionary statements. Mostly just criticisms of Harper. Anything else is more platitudes.

Ignatieff- Hard to tell. He has a policy forum message board which ranges from real Ignatieff issues to things completely unrelated e.g. Volpe's campaign donations and Layton on Afghanistan. Otherwise, a bunch of speeches with more platitudes. Oh, and a carbon tax so that Liberals will never ever win in Alberta.

Dion- Some hard policy on the environment. Unfortunately, it's a government report from 2005 which makes it pretty much the Martin environmental policy. Otherwise very little in the way of hard policy.

Kennedy- An admitted lack of breadth of issues but on the issues where policy has been released- hard targets and new ideas. Some examples:

On the environment: - tax breaks for environmentally friendly cars and taxes on gas guzzlers
- hard targets on power creation through wind power ( 5000 MW by 2010; 10000 MW by 2015)
- An acknowledgement that any environmental policy must work with the oil and gas industry not against it.
-25% improvement in environmental standards

On Immigration- Acknowledgement that immigration only way to fund social programs with retiring baby boom!!!
- Acknowledgement of real challenges immigrants face in getting credentials recognized/upgraded

We tried the host of platitudes approach in the last election and it got us nowhere. People had no idea what Liberals stood for. The only real policy we had was the 50/50 education plan which was a good plan but a horrid soundbyte. If we want to win, we need to steal a page from Harper's playbook. We need specific ideas in key policy areas that are implementable and understandable. It is not enough to "stand for truth, justice, all that stuff."

No comments:

All views expressed in this blog are those of the author and the author alone. They do not represent the views of any organization, regardless of the author's involvement in any organizations.

All comments are the views of the individual writer. The administrator reserves the right to remove commentary which is offensive.

The author is not responsible for nor does he support any of the advertisements displayed on the page