Friday, March 18, 2011

The Liberals Need to be the party of Change not the Status Quo

I have said before and will say it again talk of fiscal responsibility and democratic institutions bore the public to tears. It is not worth an ad campaign.

The Liberals need to focus their attacks on prisons, fighter planes and corporate tax cuts. The former might be related to the latter list, but trying to explain that to the public is a lost cause.

Most important of all the Liberals need to juxtapose prisons, fighter planes and corporate tax cuts with something. For way too long now the Liberals have set themselves up as the defenders of the Status Quo from the party that wants to destroy it, viz., the Conservatives. This is a bizarre position for an opposition party, yet alone an ostensibly liberal one, to take. The Liberals need to embrace change and more importantly to develop policies that offer a clear benefit to all Canadians.

I have said before I will say it again. The Liberal's early childhood education program is an obvious place to start. It is a mess. The Liberals should abandon what they have now and follow in Ontario's footsteps and offer all day playschool and Kindergarten to every 4 and 5 year old in the country. The benefit of any child care or early childhood education program lies not with just the material benefit it offers parents, but also with how well it allows them to plan for the future. A promise to provide 250,000 new childcare spots does not only parents to plan for anything. Full day playschool and Kindergarten does.

Now I have also said that also repeatedly said that the Liberals need a policy that will suck life out of Conservative's get tough on crime agenda and that a promise to legalize marijuana would do just that. However, I feel that I am flogging a dead horse. So I suggest that the Liberals open up the euthanasia debate instead. It will not get the same attention, it is a much more complicated issue and it can not be constrasted with anything yet allow the war on drugs, but it has strong public support and it would be popular in Quebec. It is certainly a better strategy than promising to seek federal funding into a Quebec City arena.

Finally, the Liberals should promise to give Canadians 4 weeks of vacation a year. Currently Canada lags behind only the US in terms of how much vacation it mandates. 4 weeks is the minimum in virtually every other Western country. Such a promise would take some of populist winds out of Stephen Harper's and Jack Layton's sails and it would be a great fun calling Harper a kill joy.


WesternGrit said...

Yes, yes, yes, and yes. But... now we need to ensure that the power that be hear this...

John L said...


The Liberals have also committed to buying a new fleet of jet fighters for the Air Force by the end of the decade, and at a cost of many billions of dollars, so I don't know that trying to differentiate themselves on that subject is a good idea. If both the Cons and the Libs are proposing the same idea where's the moral high ground?

Koby said...

There are jets and then there are F-35s.

Anyway, talk about anyone owning the moral high ground on this is odd. If the Conservatives toss out a barb and the Liberals fail to respond in kind, then they could be said to have taken the moral highground. Choosing to buy less expensive jets is policy difference.