5 Stray thoughts on Day 2 of #NDP2016

by chuckofthesea

1. Rachel Notley’s deeply cynical speech (at least, the second half was) made me despairing not only of the prospects for the NDP, and even Bernie Sanders, but for electoral politics in toto, so… yeah. Blue collar kitsch & sentimentality are poor substitutes for providing workers with alternatives to crash-prone, climate-&-treaty-killing industries. But the same NDPers who’d have been the first to call bullshit if Trudeau or Harper said the sorts of things she did couldn’t get to their feet fast enough to give her ovation after ovation.
2. Melanie Mark was great & made East Vancouver proud with her speech to the convention.
3. Romeo Saganash‘s presentation on building nation-to-nation relationships was terrific, & a tonic after Notley’s depressing pipeline boosterism. I hope he thinks about running again for leader.
4. Stephen Lewis, who used to be on the party’s right, is now definitely on its left, & I’m willing to bet that very little of that movement was on his part. He gave a great speech, and I also noticed that his speaking style is like a combination of Stuart MacLean & Rex Murphy, but with a little bit of Ron James, which makes it kind of fun & pleasant instead of being the worst thing in the world.
5. I was playing hide-&-seek in the hallway with Joséphine when all of a sudden a door opened behind where I was hiding & from it emerged Thomas Mulcair, who is, predictably, on a charm offensive. For those who haven’t been following closely, I am literally only at this convention so that I can vote him out as leader. But he asked me how old Joji was (I think he was impressed by her counting, which is genuinely impressive), & as it turns out he has surprisingly pretty eyes that happened also, in this case, to betray a bit of his desperation & fear about this weekend. He had an underdog look that almost made me want to like him, all of which served as a reminder to me that I am uselessly sentimental & easily led astray myself, & probably shouldn’t have the right to vote anywhere.
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