Sunday, 30 August 2015

"Not in my lifetime, son, but maybe in yours!" Stephen Lewis speech Aug. 24th

We are in the beginning of a 77-day Federal Election #42 in Canada. I think it matters not what you believe, but that you read, learn and become involved.

"Not in my lifetime, son, but maybe in yours!" –David Lewis to Stephen Lewis

 I am stirred. It was a wonderful speech, from a highly respected man. He's 77 years old and says he's waited 75 years for this day, from licking stamps at age 2 in his family home! This is the gist of it.

There are many reason why the Conservatives should not  and will not be elected. 

The meaning of the Duffy trial. 

 The senate is dead, the death rattles are of no consequence. What is of consequence is  is what has been revealed, and that is the antithesis of democracy, an obsessive authoritarian need to control.

"Egotism and narcissism are not the twin pillars of democratic governance."

The concentration of power in the Prime Minister's office distorts the running of parliament, distorts the power of question period, distorts checks and balances, distorts the views of civil servants, and engenders in the public a deep and abiding cynicism.
Fear is not a policy. Fear is not an election platform. Fear is the last refuge of those for whom terrorism is a political device and civil liberties be damned. To use fear as a path to power engenders a deep an abiding cynicism.

The meaning of economic management

Despite their protestations, the Conservatives are second rate economic managers.
Stephen Harper can pretend otherwise, but the pretence is mythology. And leans on endless complaints about global difficulties.
  • we're in a recessionary quagmire, with negligible economic growth.
  • We have continuing and unacceptable levels of unemployment -persistently above 6%.
  • We've gutted the manufacturing sector and 
  • we've placed all of our expectations in a resource extraction economy, which is untenable with the collapse of oil prices
  • and the staggering decline in economic management.
Good government plans ahead of time for the needs of the present and the needs of the future.
 These aren't economic managers; these are economic poseurs.

And there is every reasons to believe that the Canadian public is on to them.
There are infinite numbers of reasons to defeat the Tories.
There are infinite numbers of reasons to elect the NDP.
  1. Restoration of Parliament. We appreciate civilised debate. When there is respect. We've lost civility in the House of Commons. Democratic norms are observed and committees can function. Yes: omnibus encyclopedic sorcery! Restore parliamentary dignity and reform.
  2. The reclaiming of Canada. The years of hard right Years of Conservative rule has hijacked the Canadian culture. At times the country feels unrecognisable. Stop the slide into militarism. Revive the right of dissent. and revive scientific opinion and influence. We can restore the cutbacks that have been applied destructively to so many entities from the CBC to hundreds of women's groups, initiate the Commission enquiry into missing aboriginal women. Frame a viable and persuasive policy on climate change. Rescue CIDA from the clutch of Foreign
    Affairs. Remove the cap on foreign aid. We can become  the thoughtful, moderate, liberal power that Canada once was, so that next time we run for the security council on the United Nations we will be overwhelmingly elected. It's a restorative agenda that is decent and humane. Principled and generous. It is an agenda that is inclusive and compassionate, rather than abrasive and contemptuous.
  3. The logic of straightforward policies. The electorate is warning to the major planks of our platform. Child care spaces for the working poor. Federal $15 minimum wage,  focus on infrastructure, emphasis one transportation and housing, revival the manufacturing sector, tax increases on large corporations. 
  4. Quite remarkable what Tom Mulcair has achieved. The mantle of integrity, regarded as the most vibrant and analytic mind, who can confront the PM on a daily basis. The most trusted of the leaders.
This is truly the opportunity of a lifetime. The yearning for change is in the air and it is the NDP that is the embodiment of that change. Just imagine... You don't have to be a romantic to know that the quest for social justice is within reach. We can again be the envy of the world. 
We can fight for human rights, and against inequality, as an example to the world.

Thomas Mulcair in Perth, ON

Former diplomat Stephen Lewis, son of former New Democratic Party leader David Lewis, introduces NDP leader Thomas Mulcair at a campaign rally in Toronto, Ont., on August 24, 2015. In his speech, Mr. Mulcair announces a pledge to increase the Guaranteed Income Supplement program for seniors and says his party will reset the eligibility age for Old Age Security from 67 to 65-years old. In his answers to the media, he says he wants to focus on Canada’s manufacturing sector and to assist Canadian veterans.

"You showed a disdain for our veterans," says veteran grappling with


Yamini MacLean said...

Hari OM
I sense that the world over the 'common man' is starting to take political responsibility more seriously again. For a long time there was complacency and a throwing up of the hands. Hope you have lots of informed and worthy debates! YAM xx

Red said...

We need somebody with a vision that includes all people.

Kay L. Davies said...

I have reached the point where I don't care which: the Liberals or the NDP, wins the election, as long as the Harper Conservatives are thrown out on their little pointed ears.

William Kendall said...

I'm with Kay on this- it doesn't matter if it's a Liberal or NDP government so much as it matters that the Tories are thrown into the political wilderness for forty years.

Stephen Lewis is one of the best people this country's ever produced. I've seen him speak before. A truly honourable man.