The NDP are looking for a good woman…but only because they have to.

I hate gender bias of any form that gives a woman something they may not otherwise be entitled to merely because they have breasts. Yes,we women have been historically marginalized in a plethora of ways, but I have never agreed to simply enforcing gender minimums in hiring requirements or any other capacity to improve the situation.

The NDP are now finding themselves in a bind because of such idiocy. According to their own gender rules, the new leader of the NDP must be a woman, since it is a woman vacating the position, unless the very male Moe Sihota, president, or Bob Smits, treasurer, step down and one of their positions is filled by a woman.

It is stupidity, idiocy, and bad policy – pure and simple. The best person for the position should get the job, regardless of sex, religion, colour, etc.

Question is, who came up with this policy in the first place, and why do they intend to keep it, as stated in this story from The Times-Colonist?

VICTORIA — The next leader of the British Columbia New Democratic Party will have to be a woman, unless the party’s male president or treasurer resigns, according to gender rules in the NDP constitution. The unique requirement, buried within the NDP’s official rule book, adds an extra layer of complexity in the race to replace leader Carole James.

 The constitution states both genders must be represented in the jobs of party leader, president and treasurer. The current president is Moe Sihota, and the treasurer is Bob Smits. James is stepping down later this month, and virtually all those who have publicly said they are considering the job are men.

 “If the constitution is going to be complied with, one of those other officers needs to resign and be replaced with a woman,” said former NDP provincial representative David Schreck, who first publicized the gender clause on his Twitter account Friday.”There’s only one way out and that is Sihota or Smits has to be replaced by a woman.”

Read more: http://www.timescolonist.com/technology/leader+woman+according+obscure+rule/4049617/story.html#ixzz19u35EWSE

The only benefit to this embarrassing rule is that it might be the best way to get rid of Moe Sihota,whose name recognition and Liberal- like, heavy baggage is doing nothing to assist the party in presenting a competent face to the people of BC.  ( bloody funny link embedded there)

46 thoughts on “The NDP are looking for a good woman…but only because they have to.

  1. Ivana C. Justice

    Three quotes to bring in this new year from Maya Angelou :

    ” I love to see a young girl go out and grab the world by the lapels. Life’s a bitch. You’ve got to go out and kick ass.

    I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw something back.

    I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel. ”

    Well comrades – I’m lacing up my boots, warming up my pitching arm, and doing all I can to inspire others to have courage, and rise to the occasion.

    The basis of our democratic process is not to be defined or limited by race or gender. Integrity, courage, clear conscience, reason, kindness, dedication to upholding justice and rectifying injustice carry far more weight.

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  2. silo

    Have to agree, legislating gender equality is not a good way to achieve gender equality. An woman that gets elected when such a policy is in effect figuratively has an asterisk next to her name as there is always some doubt whether they truly are the best person or stumbled in by default.
    Frankly I do not think the NDP gene poll is deep enough to only allow approximately 50 % to be eligible.
    If the party persist in keeping this rule I will not be voting for their candidate in the next election. I can’t have faith in a party that makes dumb policies like their forced gender equality

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  3. Terrence

    I agree with you, Laila, that the only good thing that might come from this politically correct gender discrimination is that Moe Sihota goes. The NDP would be MASSIVELY better off without him.

    But, that the NDP has such a politically correct gender discrimination policy is just another example of how far out-of-touch it is with real people. Ideology rules the NDP.

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  4. Ian Vaughan

    There are two kinds of NDP. Most members are fairly moderate, (though in MHO, misguided), but the hard line core are ideologues willing to smash and burn for power. These core people could care less about the average members, especially women. The only limit on their control is the veneer of ‘democracy’ they have to put up with. This puts them in opposition to the regular members, who are effectively limiting their success by thwarting their machinations via resolutions and policy passed at the conventions.

    Polling in the fall was showing that Carole James was in a position to win an election against Campbell or his successor. The ideologues, being ideologues, failed to see that it was Carole’s moderate stance that was resonating with non-NDP voters. They immediately concluded that the NDP as a whole was becoming popular. Their immediate action was to remove Carole and take control of the party so as to position themselves for power. As always, this doomed the plan, and polling puts the numbers as

    BC First 32.7
    NDP 27.1
    Lib 18.6

    Numerically, when an effectively non-existing party polls higher than sitting parties, it’s going to be a blow-out, ala Campbell’s first win. The NDP’s best option is to elect a leader that is older, a good speaker, and from the hinterland, and position themselves as the preferred opposition party.

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  5. Antoinette ("Toni") Halberstadt

    Laila, the headline is misleading. If you read the article, you’ll see that the Leader could be any gender, but, to balance that, at least one of the other two positions (President & Treasurer) must be a woman. So, it’s the Pres (Moe S) or Treasurer (Bob Smits) who would be replaced, and there’s a great ‘gene pool’ of women already elected on the Executive, to choose from.

    40+ years of political involvement has taught me that the opinions that ‘the best person’ would run for election of any political position, regardless of gender, is naive.
    You have to understand the conditioning and hence psychology of women in our society, to realize that while even the most incapable men tend to put their names forward, very capable women often don’t even consider running for positions until space is clearly made for them to do so. As a result of such Gender Equity rules, excellent women often emerge.
    Again, though, that’s not to say that only a woman Leader will be allowed by the NDP. That’s not so.

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  6. Beryle

    We need to find a powerful feminist woman like the woman in this story:

    http://ca.reuters.com/article/topNews/idCATRE7000DC20110101

    With the status of women a priority in a previously male-chauvanistic country, with strong women in her government, she will turn her country upside down.

    Why can’t we find women like her to lead in BC. Everyone kowtows to the rich, and the middle class and poor folk are being crushed. Where can we find a woman of courage, integrity and a passion for social justice. Unless we do, it will be the same old puppet government no matter which party gets elected.

    Enough with favors for the rich. Give us someone who will fight tor the wellbeing of the common folk!

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  7. Joan Moffat

    Well, well, well I can’t believe it, the NDP sexually discriminating again. Isn’t there a law prohibiting this?

    That’s it for me, I am going to look at B.C. Refed. I have been CCF and NDP all my life but enough is enough. I cannot stay with the NDP because my choice for leader is a MALE, John Horgan.

    Moe Sihota must go, he has a deplorable record, kicked out of cabinet 3 times, kicked out of the law society, etc. and a sneaky back room secret deal with Carole and CUPE and BCGEU to pay him $75,000 for the volunteer president job and not one MLA knew anything about it. A disgraceful record too long to list.
    How about a list of 100 reasons why Moe Sihota must go?!

    This low-life does not belong in a left wing party, he is a business man rightie and is purposely destroying the left wing for his business interests. He is hated by most people and they will not vote NDP as long as he is in the back room, running the show. I believe he is there for one reason and one reason only, to make sure the NDP lose the next election and his rightie pals, Campbell and his gang remain in power. He was behind Carole doing even stupider things than she was already doing before he arrived on the scene. Courting big business with the $275 a plate dinner, looking like a fool, the yellow scarves to discriminate against the good people who did not wear one. So much more, stupid is as stupid does.

    If Sihota is not dragged out of there by his feet if need be, right now, before he can do any more damage the NDP can expect to have him lose the next election for them and unfortunately so can the people of this province.

    No more corporate welfare, giving away of our resources and assets. We need help for the poor, the elderly, the sick, the kids, the unemployed….a government by the people, for the people no more Corporate welfare and corporate rule.

    GO MOE AND GO NOW…..

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  8. silo

    Over the years I have voted in a number of elections. At times the candidate was a woman and other times a man, nonce was the gender of the person a significant reason to vote for the person.
    I will admit that It would probably be good for for Moe to resign not so it would open the slate for men to run but as we all know Moe has considerable baggage from the past that the BCLibs like to keep reliving -as much as I thought Carole’s resignation was for the good of the party so too would Moe’s resignation.
    People seem to forget that the leader to a great extent is the PR face and the real “party” should be a behind the scenes consortium.
    The party’s sole criteria in selecting the next leader is who is the most electable candidate. Setting race, gender or any other criteria is foolish. To carry the foolishness to a more logical conclusion the party President should be a disabled person and treasurer should be a specific visible minority. Yes complete foolishness but then the gender policy is as well.

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  9. Antoinette ("Toni") Halberstadt

    Joan, from an email notification of a subsequent message from you that hasn’t been posted here, I realize you’ve read my previous post, pointing out that it is the Pres or Treasurer who will be replaced, so the NDP will NOT have to elect a woman Leader.
    Your missing post said “I sure hope she (me) is right…..Can’t you just hear Campbell’s main stream media already?!” Well, the sad thing is that the main stream media has already struck their blow, by giving the original article the misleading headline implying that we will be forced to elect a female leader. And unfortunately Leila, and other commenters here, fell for it, missing the body of the article that says otherwise.

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  10. Laila

    Toni, I did not mistake anything ,so kindly correct yourself please. Read my post above and I stated correctly:

    ” According to their own gender rules, the new leader of the NDP must be a woman, since it is a woman vacating the position, unless the very male Moe Sihota, president, or Bob Smits, treasurer, step down and one of their positions is filled by a woman ”

    Nothing was missing, there have been no revisions and this is my original post. I hardly see Moe or Bob stepping down, from what I hear they are going to try and find a way to work around it.

    As you are talking about comments, Joan tried to post a couple, wordpress, not me, held them as spam and so I posted her first post and deleted the other two subsequent posts. Occasionaly the already set spam filters hold something I have to release, but other than their guidelines, I do not moderate comments unless they are sexually expliciit in nature, hateful or otherwise offensive in such a manner.

    Either way,Toni, it is not I who is confused and I would encourage everyone to re-read what I have written if that is the case.

    Ivana, thank you for posting those excellent quotes. With all the crap young women are being bombarded with, we need not so gentle reminders and examples of strong, progressive women.

    Terrene and Silo, both excellent posts and opinions, both of which are mirrored in discusson on facebook at this time- if anyone wants to join the rampant debate on this post via facebook, add me and you can have your say too.

    Ian, interesting and valid take from an angle not many have voiced yet. What does everyone think of this?

    Toni, to address your other comment, I think I speak for many women when I say that a female candidate who would only run if there was an open position waiting for her, is not someone I would want to represent my riding. I simply find that repulsive to my ethics and integrity and whatever happened to working for something and showing what you are made of? Akin to sleeping your waty to the top and then turning out to be a great executive, no one is going to forget how you got there..

    Beryle, there are plenty of women with business background, humanitarian morals and ethics and the intelligence to handle this position, however it is crap like this policy and others, that holds us back. Yes, I have a finance background, a business acumen and worked in non-profit as well, and feel I could bring a heck of a lot to the table…. it it were set.

    Unfortunately, I see no room for credible candidates when someone has to give up a postion in order to meet someone else’s ridiculous quota. Strike three.

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  11. silo

    Antoinette
    Went back and looked at several of the original articles. they all make is very clear that as things are now the leader MUST they also go on to say the party does have other options such as either the treasure or president can resign or they can change the rules.
    What concerns me is if the party can make a fight out of a dumb rule like this can they really be considered a government in waiting, can anyone one have faith in a party that self destructs on a bi monthly schedule.
    Whether Moe should go is one discussion is John Horgan the best to lead the party is another but, under no circumstances should their gender form part of the reason for either decision.
    The main stream media is correct when they say at this time the NDP will be forced to select a female leader. Does the NDP have choices – yes but so far there does not seem to be much groundswell within the executive of the NDP to deal with the matter
    During the last few months my faith in the NDP has been only marginally high than my faith in the BCLibs. Looking at opinion polls through out the province it appears many feel the same as I do.

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  12. June Ross

    Just a brief thought as I think I was the one who got all of this started by asking a simple question to Provincial Council /Executive Board about Article 13 and what process they were going to use to adhere to the Constitution.

    It makes no sense to me for anyone to be looking for Bob Smits to step, although I bet Moe is working on him to do that! We have three female VP’s. One of them could be appointed temporarily as President, could they not? Then Moe is gone!! GONE!!

    From my perspective also, there needs to be a very deep clean out of the Party Echelon. VERY DEEP…and then just maybe, we will, as members, begin to regain some of our deomocracy

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  13. Antoinette ("Toni") Halberstadt

    Yes the mainstream media’s deliberately misleading opening statements make it clear that the Leader will have to be a woman. And no they are not correct. Following that, they clarify (too late) “The constitution states both genders must be represented in the jobs of party leader, president and treasurer.” i.e. the Constitution does not say the Leader has to be a woman, or for that matter a man if the other two positions are held by women. All it’s saying is that there has to be a mix of genders in those three top positions. (If you like I’ll post the clause from the constitution)
    Reading on, to what Shreck says: ”If the constitution is going to be complied with, one of those other officers (i.e. President or Treasurer) needs to resign and be replaced with a woman,” said former NDP provincial representative David Schreck. …. ”There’s only one way out and that is Sihota or Smits has to be replaced by a woman.”
    While that’s not the ‘only’ way out, rest assured that New Democrat members — who ultimately make the decision on how to comply with the Constitution — are not stupid, and will not insist on the mainstream media’s primary suggestion of a way out, namely that the Leader must be a woman.
    As for ” I hardly see Moe or Bob stepping down …”, that’s just your guess, which you’re entitled to. Indeed I’m sure Moe wouldn’t want to step down, and indeed he might be working on ways to get around it within the limits of the Constitution, but it’ shouldn’t be a matter of waiting to see who voluntarily steps down. The Membership — via our Constituency associations and reps on the Executive and Provincial Council — should make that decision.
    The Constitution says that if the position of President becomes vacant, the whole of the Provincial Council elects a replacement from the existing Executive.
    On the other hand, the Constitution says the Executive alone gets to decide on who to appoint as Treasurer if the position becomes vacant. So my guess is that Moe or someone will try to persuade Bob Smits to voluntarily resign as Treasurer.

    So, the Membership had better get cracking on supporting Bob Smits to stay on until the membership decides otherwise, and we should all be getting cracking with our Constituency exec’s and Regional and other reps on the Executive, to participate in this decisionmaking, submitting resolutions saying that the most sensible and inclusive route is that the President should be replaced, so that the membership can be involved — via all our Provincial Council delegates — in the election of his replacement.

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    1. Laila

      It is this policy that is wrong and misleading Toni,regardless of how you think the press presented this, or how I present it.

      Who says having three men is unfair representation if all those men are competent and do their jobs well and with integrity? Who came up with the idea that having perhaps three women in those roles is unacceptable, even though those three people are the best for the job? How does this represent at all, what is best for the people of BC who will ultimately bring the party to power, or defeat?

      It is nonsense, pure and simple, that Bob should be forced persuaded out of his position to meet the completely nonsensical demands of a policy gone horribly wrong. Derived of good intention perhaps, but nonetheless a policy which clearly many find distasteful. To me, it speaks volumes to how this party operates and while one can spin it all they want to make it look better, it is what it is Toni. Do people want more women candidates? Certainly. But do they want more female candidates at the cost of the RIGHT candidate, if that person should happen to be male? Not at all. And you know that this policy speaks to more than this executive, it speaks to departing MLA’s in ridings, am I not correct?
      Here is a CBC story that might meet more with your approval, but the party policy remains the same no matter how it is presented. http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2011/01/02/bc-ndp-gender.html

      My sources within the NDP tell me, and no I am not guessing ,that it is the executive itself, that are the big problem with this parties operations.They also tell me Moe has no intention of leaving, and Bob may do the right thing as others dictate to him, but that having him go may not be the best decision.
      Inviting Moe back was perhaps good for a few within the party,bad for party moral and public image and more importantly, public trust. The NDP will not become the party to lead this province into the future without drastic changes, and a re-invention and focus on what this is all about. I am sick to death of hearing what the executive want, what Moe wants, what the unions want.

      When will I hear from the NDP about what the people they are allegedly representing, want?

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  14. Scotty on Denman

    It’s frustrating to watch the NDP continue to dither about who is the enemy. It’s appalling the NDP looks like it needs reminding that the BC Liberal government is the enemy. It shouldn’t need reiteration that anything that gets in the way of destroying the enemy has to be eliminated.

    It’s bad enough that gender and presidency issues give ammunition to the enemy. It’s worse that it is pissing off the membership (what’s left of it.)

    Not to put too fine a point on it. The gender equality policy is stupid because: (fine point, fine point, fine point…many fine points.) Get rid of it now.

    The Presidency situation was sneaky and (fine point, fine point, fine point…many fine points.) Sihota and the stipend are negatives and have to go. Now.

    Note to potential leadership contenders: The longer you wait to declare, the more you will look like sneaky, stupid ditherers. Get out of the trench and attack.

    The enemy, that is.

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    1. Laila

      Excellent comment Scotty, excellent. I have said the same thing over and over, see comment of mine above with link to previous post. But is anyone listening?

      Also, I agree wholeheartedly about the leadership contenders. Waiting to see who does what, and where the leadership race looks like it might go is foolish and alarming. No one wants to take on machine gun Falcon? Afraid to ask Christy some hard questions and dish it out as hard as it comes at you? Because this is not going to be easy, nor nice and whomever get to be leader had better be ready to take this on, and not have to send a party research assistant to find the answers to something they should already know.

      There is not much someone could run past me on a hell of a lot of issues without having the answer and a full grasp of the issue right on the tip of my tongue. But then again, I am a writer working towards making this province better, not a politician or a party president with dubious, possibly profit oriented motives.

      And for the record, Moe is more than welcome to defend himself or post his visions here if he should like to, as are all the executive. Thousands of undecided BC’ers read here daily.

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  15. silo

    During the middle of the last election campaign I felt the NDP intentionally pulled back and tried to lose. It seems that when the BCLibs have decided to expand their destructive ways and destroy themselves the NDP appears to have come to the BCLibs rescue. Makes no sense but then again is BC politics intended to make sense or as a pilot for the Comedy Channel.
    Looks like June Ross has it correct when she is calling for a very deep cleaning of the Party Echelon.

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  16. Joan Moffat

    Laila/Antoinette,

    “and unfortunately Laila and other commenters here, fell for it, missing the body of the article that says otherwise”.

    Contrary to your statement here, it would be very difficult for Laila to also “miss the body of the blog she posted”. Laila is the one who did not and never has “fell for it”, she does superb research. She stated it exactly as it is as usual and it is many of us commenters who misread it, probably due to our rage that Moe is back and we have long wanted him gone. In fact until he was outed we did not know he was back. His record is deplorable and many people will not vote NDP as long as he runs the show.

    I’m no techy so I do not understand why a message I sent to Laila, NOT posted on her site, could end up being read by you. You also would know I specifically asked if she got two posts to please delete the second one, the one you refer to on here. I think it only appropriate that you reply only to comments I make that are posted on Laila’s blog.

    My apologies Laila for reading it once and not checking it twice!

    I still stand by my and many others ‘requests’ that the Moe goes now, the sooner the better….and the NDP constitution needs to be non-gender biased in any way, ever.

    Joan

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  17. Antoinette ("Toni") Halberstadt

    For the record:
    1. I too would like to see Moe go(e). Since there is controversy around him, and not around Bob Smits, it would do a lot for the party’s morale and unity.
    2. I too agree the NDP blew the last election, and many lay the blame for that on Carole’s inadequacy which is one reason The Thirteen asked her to step down. (And many members also think the president and Exec of that time, which president wasn’t yet Moe, were also asleep at the switch, rather than it being deliberate).
    3. For the reason already stated, I support the notion of gender equity, but am not 100% in favour of how it was done during the run-up to the last election, and am pleased that that is under review, and the point I’ve been trying to make in all the above posts is that it will not apply to the election of the next Leader, and that we should work hard to counter that ‘spin’ that the media is giving.
    4. I too think that the current Executive, led by Moe, seems to have made some lousy decisions and that they seem to be ‘running’ Provincial Council instead of vice versa, which would be members running the Party via our Constituencies’ Provincial Council delegates between Conventions, and via our Convention motions and delegates on Convention years.
    That all said, I also suspect that the power weilded by the Executive is in part because members at the Constituency level haven’t been as actively involved as they used to be, and are not sending well-prepared delegates to either Conventions or Provincial Council meetings. Small wonder the members have been so blah in the past few years, given the blah leadership with nothing to say except that Cambell Liberals = Bad.
    The way to change the Gender rules for Constituency Nomination Races is through resolutions sent by Constituencies. How about getting on with it, being ready when the Women’s Rights Committee comes back to Provincial Council with its review.
    The only way to change the rest of the gender equity rules is by changing the Constitution, which can only be done by Convention. So, if you don’t like those rules, once again get involved with your Constituency Association and craft resolutions for Convention.
    Meanwhile, since all we have to go by at present is the Constitution, the way to ensure that the President rather than the Treasurer steps down is, once again, to craft motions accordingly and to get each of our Constituencies to debate it, vote on it, and communicate accordingly to the Provincial Exec and at the next Provincial Council meeting.

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  18. Antoinette ("Toni") Halberstadt

    Joan, re: “I’m no techy so I do not understand why a message I sent to Laila, NOT posted on her site, could end up being read by you.”
    I signed up to receive emails whenever anyone posts on this subject, and your post arrived in my email.
    Re: ” You also would know I specifically asked if she got two posts to please delete the second one, the one you refer to on here. I think it only appropriate that you reply only to comments I make that are posted on Laila’s blog”
    Sorry, I read it as you asking that the one that got posted on Laila’s blog be deleted, and so I was responding mainly to the one I got via email.

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  19. John's Aghast

    Well, you better get at it. When the stupid gender equality issue came up at the LAST election I thought it was assinine, but since I was a reluctant Liberal voter (I hadn’t realized just HOW corrupt their leader was) I could care less if they were shooting at their feet. They’ve had a year and a half plus to come to their senses – and didn’t. Makes you wonder if they’re capable of running the Province when they can’t run their own party. Oh, woe is me. Wonder how much a one way ticket to Newfoundland is.

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  20. Antoinette ("Toni") Halberstadt

    P.S. …. though i bet you’re getting tired of me by now, and in fact I’m getting tired of me myself …
    Seems to me that Laila and the posters here want good government, for a sustainable, just, compassionate, economically viable etc society. And that you are all thinking, questioning people.
    So, if you are not presently active Members, and wish to vote for the next NDP Leader, and want to be active in getting the party to change its constitution, be aware that the window of opportunity to sign up for the Leadership election ends 90 days prior to said election, which is Jan 16th. If you and your friends have not already done so, do sign up at https://www.gifttool.com/donations/Donate?ID=176&AID=1212&list=joinonmenu

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  21. Laila

    Antoinette- or do you prefer Toni? – I am not tired of you, and I appreciate you taking the time to clarify points in this issue. Yes, we are all for good government here, whatever party that may be! in that vein, we could join the Liberals – briefly – to assist in voting the leader we feel would do the least amount of damage in the interim, or the one the NDP would have the best chance at beating in an election…lol.

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  22. Dan

    I just found your site tonight and have been reading for about two hours.
    I think you should run for the leadership of the NDP,from what I have read and the comments people leave you. I would vote for you,cuz you sound very qualified considering you figured out the sea to sky thing. I never knew about that either but now I emailed everyone I know and they are all reading you too! By the way, I read your last post and I think you should have subscriptions so you can do this all the time.I’m hooked and I wished you could post all the time because I would really like that kind of stories all the time.

    Peace Dan.

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  23. Antoinette

    lol !
    And thank you for your graciousness, Laila.
    By the way, I think in retrospect that the accidentally misleading thing in your original blog statement was that the leading phrase, following right on from “The NDP are now finding themselves in a bind because of such idiocy”, was “According to their own gender rules, the new leader of the NDP must be a woman, since it is a woman vacating the position, unless ….”
    As a journalist you likely agree that most readers are influenced by the leading phrase, not paying much attention to what follows, which in this case was ‘unless …..’ And that’s how most of your readers reacted in this case too.
    As for my name, somehow the ‘Toni’ automaticly popped up after I registered, but I don’t have preferences. ‘Toni’ was my identity when I was a South African activist some 40 years ago, so it warms the cockles of my heart. ‘Antoinette’ is me me, but it’s too long for some people, so some even call me ‘Antoi’. Take your pick!

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  24. Joan Moffat

    Antoinette,

    Thankyou gracious lady….and a great post above.

    Right now our main worry must be Moe Sihota. He has been very busy lying about Dana Larsen and his apology, not apology, apology full of nothing but a bunch of lies. Check out todays cbc and the strait. All this complete with comments to the corporate main stream media.

    MOE MUST GO NOW, BOB STAYS.

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  25. Leah

    …and I am with Dan and Bernadette.

    The utter stupidity of enforcing gender minimums (or even allowing the concept!) is so far away from “democracy” it’s astounding. To me, this smacks of backroom deals and puppet masters. And Moe Sihota.

    If a woman has not developed her own right hook, and a powerful left jab…then don’t enter the ring! If a woman wants the big chair, she must PROVE herself capable of taking it – not having it “given” to her by those folks behind the scenes, whose agenda isn’t clearly stated and obvious to every voter. Every party has them, in large numbers.

    I’m really sorry, but until Sihota is gone, and gone completely…I’ll never vote for the NDP again. He’s had his chance at political glory, and he blew it. I don’t know who was thinking what even “allowing” him to come back in a position of any power whatsoever! As long as the NDP has him as President, they’ve shown me more about the reality of the party than they wanted me to know.

    Quite frankly, I’ve never seen a party that disgusts me more at this point in time.

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  26. Obviously the only way to adhere to the “constitution” of the BC NDP (was this constructed by the BC liaRs by the way?) is to have these three “top” postions filled by:

    1. One biologically correct MALE
    2. One biologically correct FEMALE
    3. One representative of the LGBT constituentcy – preferably a transgendered individual or transexual in order to achieve the most perfect trinity!

    Jeez – the only thing no one talks about in all the leadership twattle from both parties are actual issues that affect actual British Columbians!

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  27. Skookum1

    All the “it says this, but it means that” quibbling above is nit-picking of the sort that makes your average citzen’s eyes peel, along with the paint…..in politics, optics is everything, it doesn’t matter what the (stupid) rationale is nor how it’s dissected. Gender discrimination – by either gender – should not be supported by a “progressive” party, certainly even less so a party wearing the “democratic” label. And blaming it on men, as someone above does, who run for office even though they’re incompetent…..well, geez, what about WOMEN who run for office even though they’re incompetent (Carole James)?? Subtext to that line of thinking: “men are incompetent, women are insecure”. Or more like “women are competent, men cannot be trusted”.

    Nothing like alienating half the public before you’re even out of the gate. “Oh, but lots of men sympathize with women” is cocktail-lounge and poetry-seminar posturing; men who have already submitted (repeat: submitted) to their feminist gf’s/wives are of course going to mouth stuff like that; and activist men sometimes often seem ashamed they have testicles and put women on a higher pedestal because……well, just because. Some of them that talk like that even told me they do so just to get laid (“feminist b*****s are hot!” one guy told me, which is somewhere beyond irony….).

    Speaking of which, could all this be solved by Moe Sahota having a sex-change, or at least cross-dressing? I mean, anything for the cause of the party, right? And how would the rules work – seriously – if a transgendered person, or a gay person, were in one of the top jobs? Is it fair to treat gay men with the same brush as “incompetent, dishonest but ambitious” straight men? (NB there are a lot of dishonest but ambitious gay men also, just as there are a lot of dishonest and ambitious women – and gay women). And, as in sports, where’s the line between genders; if a person self-identifies as female, and has even taken the hormones and the surgery, can they still be construed/labelled as male to keep the female-activist part of the party happy? Don’t sneer – there’s a long century coming, anything is possible (though, frankly, I doubt the NDP will last as long as the 2013 election at this rate….).

    BTW I’m sure Joan E. Collins, one of the better Ethel Merman-type drag queens in Vancouver, would be taken seriously as a candidate in the West End’s riding, and quite possibly even win. Articulate, funny, classy, and good on the stump, and a better fashion sense by far than Carole James – could “she” be party leader under these rules, so long as she stayed in drag? Or would, because she’s still really Robert, she’d be disqualified from running for the NDP because she’s got the wrong set of genitalia (even though being real good at pretending she doesn’t).

    The curious part of this too, is that if any one of our show biz princesses, many of them very smart women, were to turn to politics, and were foolish enough to think the NDP were a viable party and wanted to run for its leader, they’d be denounced by the feminist element for being sex-icons, for being fulfilled in their professions, but “sexual confidence not wanted, it’s a sign of submission to male values”. In other words, female candidates who could attract even non-freministically-enlightened men will be denounced by the bra-burning types, and it’s really a pity, given some of them are of very high intelligence. Natalie Portman, Nelly Furtado, Sarah MacLachlan. And, despite that litte, er, home video, taken on a boat in the waters off Catalina, one of the sharpest women in show business right now is (gasp) Pamela Anderson. Don’t tell me “Pam for Premier” wouldn’t win a majority – I think she’d be unstoppable. She might not get a single Bible Belt vote – though even in those ridings people would go to the polls who never do – but she’d sweep the Interior and the Island. The NDP probably have a clause in their rules “women whose breasts are a certain proportion largely than their waist are forbiidden from running as candidates as they are representations of male fantasies”.

    She’s smarter than to run for the NDP anyway…..

    The rationalizations above somewhere about how women need skewed rules so as to give them a chance to overcome their natural/cultiurally-induced insecurities is so much rubbish; lots of men are in the same boat, and lots of them because employment hierarchies in some fields (notably in the unversities but publicy-funded institutions in generael), traditionally male, are now dominated by women, and upward mobility is skewed in favour of women, and the men wind up with severe inadequacy/hopelessness problems….or go into other fields ‘where they belong”. You know, like plumbing, and hard labour, and driving garbage truck and so on. Ending opportunities and squashing ambition for men, so the argument goes, is who women are going to get ahead in the world.

    Reminds me of a line in The Bacchae “what is victory? it is crushing the skulls of your enemies beneath your dancing feet”. The line is Dionysos’, the god of human transcendence (briefly put, but he’s lots of things). It’s interesting, in that context, the play is about the effeminization of a ruler in the course of his destruction and fall from power, and his demise is being torn apart by hand by his own mother, drunk on the ecstasy of the immanence of that god (the play is really about the consequences of heresy and disconnection from spiritual awareness, though).

    What I’m basically saying is that only certain kinds of wiomen would fit the NDP’s gender-equity billing method; women who had too much appeal to men, or the “wrong” kind of appeal. would not be acceptable. But that’s just as sexist, and insecure, as the policy itself.

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  28. cherylb

    My question is that if all the people on this board are NDP members (and I know that I am), and we are all calling for Moe to go, why is it that he is still here? Anyone from Provincial Office reading this? How about sending us an explanation?

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  29. Norm

    Frankly I can not see why any person would want to lead a political party in BC today. Sort of lean to the philosophy that anyone that enters the leadership contest has automatically proven they are incompetent.
    The speaker of the house “feigns” reluctance for the job and is symbolically dragged to the speakers chair. maybe the leader of the party should be anointed in the same way.

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  30. Leah

    Then they need to prepare to lose 10,000 votes…maybe more, maybe less. At this point, I’m honestly not sure if there’s anything at all the NDP could do to get my vote again. Seriously. I just can’t trust them anymore, and I know I’m not alone in this.

    So where does that leave voters like us? We care, we want change…yet we see no change at all in the Libs, NDP, or Cons that we can trust. I hope a third party comes quickly…in time for research into their issues, promises, ways, means, and executive. Failing that, it appears the only choice is not voting at all. Which is not a choice I can abide. Help!

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  31. Norm

    Leah
    Why do you need to vote for a party? Many of the current issues are the result of party politics taking the lead over the good of the people.
    Vote Independent.
    Choose the independent that is most prepared to represent the constituents.
    Until 1903 there were no parties in BC (the Conservatives were the first)
    The premier was the person that inspired the elected representatives the most, the premier could be removed by a true and independent vote of no confidence – the system worked better than the one today. The province had a government that represented the people and was much easier to remove when the premier/cabinet lost their way.

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  32. Laila

    Starting back from Dan,

    Thanks Dan, your comments are appreciated and I am glad you enjoy the content! Two hours- wow ! that surely must be a record!

    Someone once told me that no party would touch me because I would require a posse of ” handlers” to make sure I didn’t speak my mind and honest thoughts to often.

    I laughed at the time, but likely that is true of the NDP from what I have seen. Would anyone there want me to be as honest as I am here ? Doubtful. But I can say with all honesty, that it would take a blonder bomber, as I have become known in certain circles for the killer stories,to take on machine gun falcon. I could take him in a debate any day and walk away wiping falcon crumbs from my chin…lol.

    Leah, you have it all in this comment. I was taught to stand on my own two feet, no one is going to hand you anything in life that is worth having. In many ways it takes groundbreaking women to move into a make dominated profession. I’ve done it once before, with great success and I earned my way to the big office meeting with the boss in his inner sanctum, as we called it, through hard work and innovative techniques in investigating.

    I tell you, there was nothing like sitting in the leather chair across from his desk, with a glass of scotch, and seeing the respect in a man’s eyes who previously didn’t think women should be much more than secretaries. I will never forget it.

    That is the kind of candidate I want to see in women. The ones who aren’t afraid of the battles, the ones who have that killer instinct and weren’t afraid to show their balls now and then. Joy Macphail comes to mind, she was a killer when she needed to be. I think another issue is that some women are afraid to be tough when it is needed, because so many people call them bitches.
    Call it what you want, being tough doesnt mean being a bitch. It means doing what needs to be done, no matter what the stakes are.

    Mike, you cracked me up with this writing. Lovely, I love you! I hope the NDP doesnt have a breast size clause, I’d be in trouble..lol.

    You bring a valid point to the table, because I hate it when people ask me if I will cut my hair if and when I go into politics. It’s long, blonde and curly. And no, I am not cutting it, what the hell does that have to do with the issues? Or with my intelligence or leadership skill? laughable really, and yet I hear the word marketable used about candidates often.

    I’m seriously thinking of running as an independent in my riding. I just couldn’t deal with the backroom politics that the NDP clearly have led them far astray. No More Moe. Moe must Go. Go, Moe Go!.

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  33. glenn

    Liala
    tempted to move to your riding for the next election just so I could vote for an independent I could believe in.
    I agree I don’t see why you should cut your hair if you go into politics, fortunately cutting your hair will not dim your ability. I recall a bible story where Delilah cut Samson’s hair -didn’t work for her either.

    Have to admit that if I subscribed to Gender politics then maybe hair length/colour etc maybe as good a way to determine who to vote for as any other.

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  34. Joan Moffat

    Laila,

    Please stay with that thought of running as an independent and then do it. It’s a good way to get started, getting your name and policies out there.

    You must remember that Matt Todd who I have no use for but first he ran for the NDP in Surrey (south) and lost but he got his name out there, on posters everywhere. He then ran for council in White Rock and did about 3 terms before being defeated . His claim to fame ended up being that he sued James Coleridge for some minor comment he made during his campaign which was a type of comment all politicians make during campaigns, even the good honest few. My opinion of Coleridge is that he was the best, long term and most honest people person councillor silly little White Rock ever had. Todd ended up winning and he put Coleridge $50,000 in debt who could ill afford it with a still quite young family to support. Unbelievably Judy had the taxpayers pick up the large lawyer bill that Todd had amassed, knowing that his legals were being paid and that he could chase down Coleridge for as long as he liked.

    I only mention the Todd part to show that it can be done, but it could come to a happy ending for you. Hopefully Todd will never re-surface again .

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  35. Drew

    NDP internal politics are irrelevant to fixing problems like the misspending of public money on opaque P3 contracts. BC needs some new political thinking to move forward. The corruption in this province is pervasive and rooted in our political DNA. Liberals vs NDP, twiddle dumb vs teedle dee. What we need is a new political movement that is founded on the responsible and transparent use of public funds. The NDP won’t do P3 projects but they don’t have a much better track record with the public purse than the liberals do.

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  36. mike

    cherylb

    Maybe because democracy is an illusion. The fake two party system in the US uses Democrats to play the role of good guy opposition that never quite gets it together.

    The NDP in BC is the same fake controlled opposition. Sure, there are thousands of members who are salt of the earth people, but they don’t get to make policy.

    Running as independent is an honest way to go, and one that might be viewed as a waste of time. If enough people wake up and reject both of these disgusting parties and we get a few independents in, that would be a start.
    Suggesting that the BC NDP party would be any different than the criminal Campbell is like saying Obama is better than Bush. But we all know that is false, they both serve globalists and are fascists to the core.

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  37. Skookum’s interesting in depth analysis of this sillyness reminded me of a point regarding gender that no one has bothered to bring up and I doubt the NDP constitution has covered it either.

    In spite of the fact we tend to live in a world where gender is thought of as a binary trait – it isn’t so. Though the vast majority (I wouldn’t hazard a guess at the exact percentage) are clearly male or female – actually there is a continuum and some individuals are so near or at the center that doctors take it upon themselves to “decide” with the aid of scissors or a scalpel at birth. Apparently sometimes the docs guess wrong – and the person feels trapped in the wrong body.

    The situation with the runner from South Africa recently whose gender was challenged due to her “masculine” characteristics” and record setting performances is an example. It must be difficult for her (as far as I know according to accepted criteria it was “proven” she is a “she”), even more so than a developing adolescent whose gender preference or self identification can be troubling if they aren’t what is considered “normal,” due to the global controversy that arose after her record shattering performances. This is an entire different thing than those infamous cold war era woman(?) athletes from the Eastern Bloc.

    Perhaps as our world becomes even more polluted with compounds we can’t necessarily even identify this gender confusion will become even more common among mammals, including humans as appears already happening in some other species like fish or amphibians in certain areas affected by careless industrial waste disposal into waterways.

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  38. Skookum1

    @koot. About that pollution by compounds (PCBs etc), hormones in food etcm the fact is that effeminization of males is proceeding apace, and not just in our species; and I don’t mean a taste in nice shoes and good drapes, either. I don’t have detailed reports to cite, I just know it’s going on; more females than males are being born, males are being born with more feminized attributes…..this isn’t a genderology discussion so I’ll desist from anything too graphic. Point is the NDP should be concerned with preserving maleness, not punishing or restricting people for it….

    @Laila – that bit about cutting your hair if you go into politics, ya, what’s that about anyway. “Laila, nobody in politics will take you seriously until you cut your hair like a man”. Doesn’t seem to me that Sarah Palin has had her hair bobbed…..(sorry for the comparison).

    @Norm and all: As I said on Mary’s blog somewhere, or maybe on Bill T’s, one BIG obstacle faced by Independents is that government matching funds (n the form of the tax credit) are available only to registered parties; as i recall the Grits tried to limit this to parties official in the House -as is the case federally, still, I believe – but backed down. Point is the party system and the parties shouldn’t have a stranglehold on election financing, it’s heavily discrminiatory and obviously unfair, since parties are fundraising machines and individual independents just don’t have the personnel. So here’s my solution, and Laila you should think about it: charter a party, say, called the Independent Caucus, or the Independent Democrats, that’s an umbrella for quality independents, “off the poiltical spectrum” – such that you and Huntington and B. Bennett could all be in it, without having to agree on policy. The only policy platform would be “we vow to represent our constitutuents, not an ideology or a party” with various corollaries to that. That way you’d have half a shot at election spending parity, or at least not be faced by a wanton-spending Goliath in the course of the election.

    Such a system/party might also attract restive backbenchers who didn’t get into politics to be bum-catchers for the party machines/backrooms, and who really want to serve their constituents’ wishes. Enough Independents elected, outnumbering party rumps, coudl also conceivably approach the L-G and say “we are a party, and we want to choose one of our number to be Premier and he/she would have to go along with it” Of course you’d want to keep out the riff-raff somehow, but it’s an interesting concept no? I mean, why should the CPC-ML candidate be able to issue tax credit receipts, and not you/

    Coalition cabinets are one thing; a cabinet of independents, a very interesting concept. Other than the last few years of the non-party period, things went rather well from 1871 to 1898, it wasn’t really a bad system….one interesting aspect of it, also at the federal level, was byelections had to be held for anyone appointed to cabinet, to verify that their constituents wanted them in that job; the Premier also had to be “byelectioned”.

    Expensive to do yes, perhaps, but nowhere near as expensive as the consequences of the bipolar party system we currently have in place.

    A spin-off idea is regular riding assemblies, where the MLA has to face their constituents, and may also be subject to quorum-based votes or local referendums ordering them how to vote on certain issues; this is effectively the Swiss system, btw…..

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  39. Skookum1

    The cabinet-appointment byelections may have only been federal, on second thought…..elections were too difficult in BC to re-stage for such formalities; it’s largely not understood today that, for one thing, there were so few voters, it was by show of hands until a certain date, and also certain ridings did not – could not- report their results until a month or two after the others, because of remoteness, and many ridings the election wasn’t one day, it was up to several weeks, to give people a chance to ride/walk to the nearest “polling booth” (show of hands at a meeting, seems more like, first in one town, then on a certain day in another etc…)…..details of some of this can be found in the footnotes on the historical election returns area of the BC Elections site.

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  40. Lynn

    First off I would like to wish everyone a very Happy New Year!
    Second off, I am sad to report that I didn’t receive a new pitch fork in my stocking this Christmas.I assume the hst played a huge role in Santa’s spending budget.
    So the old one will have to do.
    I shant be voting for the ndp as long as Moe the mole stays on. Call me crazy, but I shant be voting for the Lieberals either.
    The gender quota simply doesn’t work, although the intention in theory is a good one the result is candidates or hires that don’t have the credentials to perform the job.
    Hire the candidate that is qualified, period. Quite frankly I don’t care if the right person for the job sits down to pee or stands.
    I am more concerned if the person’s common sense is over flowing, and their heart is filled with concern protecting the citizens of this province and crown assets.
    Get your shit together NDP.

    Like

  41. Mitchel

    Thanks for this post. I totally agree with what you are saying. I have been talking about this subject a lot lately with my father so likely this will get him to see my point of view. Fingers crossed!

    Like

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