Let me put it in historical context. In my first years as leader, I had as my opponents Pierre Trudeau and Bob Stanfield. The former was a progressive Liberal and the latter was a “Red Tory”. As a social democrat I had some serious disagreements with both of them. But I will tell you that on three key matters we thought alike. On these beliefs or values, our differences were more about speed and detail than about direction. What were these common beliefs?Something worth remembering: the NDP may be the only party running a candidate who cut his teeth fighting with Trudeau. I know some people have problems with Ed, but it's odd to think that all of the sudden, it's the NDP that has history in this parliament. The Conservative party that founded Canada no longer exists, and the Liberals running the government are all post-Trudeau apostates.
1) We understood that for Canadians as for others in the world, having more real freedom and opportunity in our lives meant we needed more positive action by government. We knew that legal freedom for a young girl or boy means little unless they have adequate housing and good schools, have a public health care system - and ready access to university education....
2) In choosing between a market-based solution and government activity for many options, the government option is not merely a different choice, it is the best choice. The task of democratic leadership is to keep the balance right....
3) The third matter Trudeau, Stanfield and I would have agreed upon is that the social justice goal of Canadian citizenship should be one of increasing equality, that the gap between the rich and the poor should be narrowed. Today’s Liberal and Conservative leaders simply do not share in these beliefs. Our differences on equality today are not about speed and detail. They have become fundamental.
Monday, April 25, 2005
Why You Should Vote NDP
In my continuing voyage towards party-whoredom, I forward this Ed Broadbent speech, via Sinister Thoughts. A shortened excerpt: