What issues are important to you?

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Jobs and Economy

Average Canadians are tired of the government and their corporate interests and your party offers an alternative. The debt load and lack of jobs should be the number one priority. A platform based on bank and electoral reform would be a  one that would be well received by most Canadians.  Restoring the Bank of Canada back to its original purpose, which was to fund infrastructure with no interest would greatly assist the economy and bring more control to the people and create jobs.  The Trudeau government failed its promise to bring in electoral reform and this disappointed thousands of Canadians.  We no longer have a democracy.  We would like to see a referendum giving us a few options.  This would need to be followed by educating people on these options.  I prefer the Swiss system based on holding referendums.

The Leap Manifesto needs to be revised in order for you even be considered an alternative party.  Energy costs have skyrocketed and this is the reality for most of Canadians.  This reality has to be addressed. 

I don't believe in free tuition because this leads to abuse.  Control in terms of student loans would be another consideration.  Extended times for repayment at no interest rate after completion of educational programming is another option.  Grants given to programs that fill current and future job market needs.  The whole education system needs to be reformed but this is a big issue to tackle.  I would like to see more mentorships, work related experience for credits and more involvement with businesses.  More focus on job ready skills rather than extending more years of education. 

Like most Canadians, I do not have prefered party I support.  Each party has its strengths and electoral reform would hopefully bring all these strengths forward.  Canada's future depends on a strong middle-class.  Past governments have failed to address policies that protect this.  They have created policies that support large corporations.  We need policies that support both public services and small to medium sized businesses as they are the ones that pay the bulk of the taxes.  As such, we continually get hit with more tax burdens.  This has to stop.

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The Canadian Monarchy

With the failure of republics around the world to promote social progress, unify diverse populations, and nurture democracy it is becoming more evident with each passing day the importance for the prime minister of Canada to be a strong supporter of Canada's monarchy. From previous experience the NDP has not been overly supportive of our monarchy.

 

This is unfortunate as monarchy has been shown to have advantages over republics in a number of areas including the quality of democratic norms. In a 2008 study titled "Presidents with Prime Ministers: Do Direct Elections Matter?" by Margit Tavits she found that directly-elected presidencies did nothing to lower voter apathy and were in fact associated with increased voter fatigue and a 7% drop in voter turnout for legislative elections. Likewise, she found that indirectly-elected presidents were not as non-partisan as we tend to believe them to be (since they are still an electoral asset). The recent Austrian election shows how a essentially powerless presidency can become divisive with the far-right challenger being barely defeated late last year. Further, a 2009 study titled "Constitutional Power and Competing Risks: Monarchs, Presidents, Prime Ministers, and the Termination of East and West European Cabinets" by Petra Schleiter and Edward Morgan-Jones found that constitutional monarchies had a marked preference for using elections when governments lost confidence of the legislature. Both legislative and (especially) executive presidencies had a marked preference for shuffling the people in cabinet and continuing to the end of term. If you feel the people should be consulted when a government falls this is not a good thing.

 

On the economic front things are much the same. In 2008 a study was published titled "Economic Growth and Institutional Reform in Modern Monarchies and Republics: A Historical Cross‐Country Perspective 1820‐2000" by Christian Bjørnskov Peter Kurrild‐Klitgaard which found that while both republics and monarchies handled small institutional reforms the same when larger reforms were undertaken republics tended to suffer a period of economic downturn or 'valley of tears' while monarchies did not. While republics would generally recover and catch up this effect should not be under-estimated. If large institutional changes are needed its not the size of the change that is the biggest hindrance to success; its the blow back from those negatively effected (see America). By lessening this effect monarchies are more adaptable than republics. Another study of interest was conducted in 2004 titled "Determinants of generalized trust: A cross-country comparison" by Christian Bjørnskov. Professor Bjørnskov studies 'generalized trust' which is best described as the trust you have for people who are neither your kin nor your friends. It has a large number of positive economic benefits (and a few social ones, see refugee crisis). He found that one of the factors most highly correlated with greater levels of generalized trust was whether a country had a monarchy or not. In a second study published in 2013 titled "Trust, Welfare States and Income Equality: What Causes What?" by Andreas Bergh and Christian Bjørnskov found that welfare states did not increase generalized trust but that higher levels of generalized trust helped welfare states survive. It is no accident that the most successful welfare states have tended to be monarchies.

 

With the increasingly divided USA to our south and the increasingly extreme views being embraced in France, Austria, Germany, Hungary, Poland (to name a few) we should remember the words of our first prime minister: "By adhering to the monarchical principle we avoid one defect inherent in the Constitution of the United States. By the election of the president by a majority and for a short period, he never is the sovereign and chief of the nation. He is never looked up to by the whole people as the head and front of the nation. He is at best but the successful leader of a party. This defect is all the greater on account of the practice of reelection. During his first term of office he is employed in taking steps to secure his own reelection, and for his party a continuance of power. We avoid this by adhering to the monarchical principle – the sovereign whom you respect and love. I believe that it is of the utmost importance to have that principle recognized so that we shall have a sovereign who is placed above the region of party – to whom all parties look up; who is not elevated by the action of one party nor depressed by the action of another; who is the common head and sovereign of all." ~John A. Macdonald

 

Our monarchical constitution has produced a series of heads of state (and related members) who have worked to make Canada great. For instance you have Prince Edward, Duke of Kent and Strathearn who in 1792 famously broke up a riot between French and English saying "Part then in peace. Let me hear no more of the odious distinction of English and French. You are all His Britannic Majesty's beloved Canadian subjects.". This is, I might add, the first recorded instance of someone using the term 'Canadian' in a civic rather than ethnic sense. And of course you have our Queen who has managed to avoid in her 65 years on the throne either calling a large portion of the population deplorable (which Hillary Clinton couldn't manage over a one year period) or being a total jackass (which Trump can't go a day without doing).

 

We should be proud of our system of government and you should lead the way as prime minister. As you can see I believe our monarchy provides tangible benefits to Canadians. Its not too much to ask our elected leaders show the institution well-deserved respect.

 

 

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protest vs power

I assume most of the NDP leadership candidates will share similar beliefs and priorities. My focus will be on electing someone who puts principle above power and does what is right, because it is right, not because it will give us positive editorials or a boost in the polls. I am hopeful from your kick off speech and I urge you to stay strong in your commitments. I think showing integrity will ultimately lead to power. Striving to please everyone ultimately pleases no one. Best wishes on the campaign..

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A moderate foreign affairs policy, particularly in the Middle East

Canada has long struggled with an international policy that both respects the independence and rights of individual nations, while being realistic about the existence of threats to international security. In my opinion, it is both short-sighted and unwise to ignore the threat of global terrorism ever-present in the world these days, however Canada must set an example as a moderate voice for co-operation, peace and compromise. Therefore, as NDP leader I would like Peter to champion an international policy that sees Canada continue to support our allies such as NATO in the defense against this threat; while doing so, we will be in a much better position to have a voice against unnecessary interference and excessive force. In the Middle East, I would like to see Canada continue the good work of Jack Layton and Tom Mulcair in standing up for the sovereignty and security of Israel against constant bomb and rocket attacks, while also encouraging both Israeli and Palestinian interests to come to the table and forge a path toward independence and human rights being protected on both sides. An independent Palestinian state must be the goal of our position in this region, however independence can only come when the Palestinian Authority is prepared to work with Israel and end all terrorist attacks within their borders.

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Create the sustainable economy and related jobs for now and the future

This is very important for Canada's domestic economy. While other developing countries are moving ahead we are falling behind; too many of the general population are finding job security and retirement security faltering.

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