Resisting the pull of cynicism since 1969.

Friday, February 16, 2007

Question for Sinister Greg

Since Greg's blog has comments turned off, I tried to leave this as a comment over at Accidental Deliberations, but was foiled by the "too many links" prohibition. So I'm making this its own post. Greg, I have to say that I've gotten whiplash trying to figure out your positions on various things lately, and I'd appreciate some clarifications.

Exhibit A: First you rail on Layton for "associating himself with Harper" (by the way...can you name one time in which he's actually done that? without parroting Liberal talking points, I mean?), but now you seem to be implying that the NDP should support the Conservatives' budget. Not because Harper's likely to come up with decent environmental legislation, mind, but because his government "shouldn't fall until it has more of a record."

Exhibit B: You left the NDP yourself a while back, but this week started saying that the progressive wing of the Liberals should "join with the NDP to build a progressive majority in this country." And as if that weren't already inconsistent enough, you also support proportional representation, which would render any push for a merged party--in either direction--pointless.

If I wanted to be a smart-ass, I'd parrot the opposition's climate change questions to Harper by demanding "were you wrong then, or are you wrong now?" But I don't, so I'll just ask: what gives?


Greg Fingas said...

Might as well hijack this thread briefly as a sort of Comments Please for all things that we'd put at Greg's blog if we could. (And sorry about the links limit - that's tripped me up at some times too.)

Re: this post, while the rest of the list is entirely fair, Calgary Grit is indeed in the Macleans 50 as #3. (Though the lack of any Blogging Dippers is rather striking given the presence of a Con and a Lib apiece.)

Idealistic Pragmatist said...


Oops, right, I meant to let him know about CG, too. Though it was awfully nice that Greg thought I should be there--thanks, Greg!

Greg said...

I plead guilty your honour and throw myself at the mercy of the court. I admit, I am working my way out of some pretty heavy confusion. a) I don't like Harper and think he is a Republican swine. b) I let that dislike for Harper push my buttons to the point of despair (even to the point of considering either not bothering to vote or maybe voting Liberal, something I swore I would never do). c) I picked up Jamey Heath's new book and it is helping with b. d) I think what is important is moving the policy yardsticks in a progressive direction. If Jack can do that with Harper, I (having gotten past the whole the "Liberals are our default progressive partner" mind meltdown)am willing to give it a go.

What gives is I am just a confused guy trying to work it all out for myself. Unfortunately, I am doing it in public so everyone knows my dirty little secrets.

Greg said...

Oh sorry, I forgot one last thing. I still am for pr. I don't want to destroy the Liberal Party. I just want to poach its left wing.

janfromthebruce said...

Jamie Heath's new book. What's the title, I would love to read it.

Mike said...


Look on the bright side...Greg could have done something REALLY crazy.


Idealistic Pragmatist said...


You know, it actually didn't occur to me that that was what was going on. I suspect it's because you and I have very different sorts of blogs--I work things out in my head and don't write about them until I have a clear opinion (and until I know enough about them to be sure I know what I'm talking about). You write more off-the-cuff, and so you're inevitably going to write some things that you don't end up believing next week. That's actually kind of refreshing, when it comes right down to it. And thank you for being so honest about it here.


Jamey Heath's book is called Dead Centre. I'm equal parts excited and dubious and curious about it, which I'm sure will make for an interesting read!


Oh, just you wait, buster, YOUR POST IS COMING, TOO! *grin*

Robert McClelland said...

(Though the lack of any Blogging Dippers is rather striking given the presence of a Con and a Lib apiece.)

Scott Tribe just pointed out that it's worse than than as there are two Libloggers and two Blogging Tories on the list. I wrote Adam Radwanski about it two days ago but so far there has been no response.

Greg said...

Thanks IP. My blog is 1 part politics and 3 parts therapy. ;)

Why are you so mixed about Heath's book?

Robert McClelland said...

b) I let that dislike for Harper push my buttons to the point of despair

Bin there, done that. You might even recall me snapping at you during the last election for jumping on board rightwing smears against the libs. I worked through it by discovering to my amazement that the NDP and its predecessors have never needed to win in order to win. It simply doesn't matter what the cons or libs do, our agenda wins in the end even if it takes 20 or 50 years for it to happen.

Idealistic Pragmatist said...


Ironically...heh...I'm still sorting that out for myself and don't feel certain enough about where I stand to talk about it until I've read the book. But I promise you a post about it once I've figured it all out. Deal? *grin*

Mike said...

"Oh, just you wait, buster, YOUR POST IS COMING, TOO! *grin*"

I have been waiting for that shoe to drop for days now...Honestly I look forward to it.


Not to be sh*t disturber, but I once said I might vote Liberal too, and look how that turned out.

Idealistic Pragmatist said...


I have been waiting for that shoe to drop for days now

Oh, dear. Do I come across as that much of a hardass?

Honestly, though, I don't have that much to say. About you leaving the NDP, eh, whatever. The NDP isn't for everybody, and that's okay with me. About you giving up on the political process altogether, though...well, we have a pretty serious difference of opinion there. I mean, I came to Canada in large part because I wanted a vibrant, multipartisan political scene with lots of diverse perspectives. I value that so much about this country, and through electoral reform I see a way of making it even better...and you're saying you'd rather chuck all that and have everybody sort it out between individuals? I mean, I actually lived for a little while in a country that worked that way most of the time, and while it was fun for a twenty-year-old's lark, it really isn't at all for me in the long term. So it's weird for me to watch someone who clearly thinks a lot like I do (by which I mean process more than content, natch) reach such a radically different conclusion than the one I've reached. And it makes me vaguely uncomfortable. So I don't judge you, but you definitely make me go "hmm."

So there you go: your post, in comment form. Not that I'd have ever said all that in a post.

Not to be sh*t disturber, but I once said I might vote Liberal too, and look how that turned out.

Ah, but you had a clearly stated rationale for that. And your guy didn't win!