Inkless: Your source for very brief Green Party news releases


And here’s one now:

Media Release

For Immediate Release

September 12, 2008

Green Party leader Elizabeth May told reporters in Toronto today that there is no deal with the Liberal Party beyond the leaders’ courtesy arrangement.

— 30 —


Inkless: Your source for very brief Green Party news releases

  1. Is “leaders’ couresy arrangement” a term of art that applies specifically to not running candidates against one another? Or just a way of saying there is some arrangment between the Greens and Liberals but it’s not particulalry sweeping or strong (and presumably has already been explained by both publicly)?

  2. If I were intent on driving the Green campaign crazy, and apparently I’m pretty good at that already so why stop now, I’d point out that no agreement is necessary to get May to do what she was already eager and passionate about doing in 2006:

    Think Twice’ campaign leery of Harper win
    National Post
    Sat 14 Jan 2006
    Page: A9
    Section: Canada
    Byline: Siri Agrell
    Source: National Post

    The prospect of Stephen Harper as prime minister has officially reduced
    someone to

    In a conference room at the Royal York hotel yesterday, a group of
    social activists implored the public to “Think Twice” before electing Mr.
    Harper and
    fiercely defended their right to second guess a voting public that seems
    to be
    shifting its support toward a Conservative government.

    Environmentalist Elizabeth May, her voice cracking, described the honour
    of being
    awarded the Order of Canada, tears welling in her eyes as she described
    the threats
    to Canadian values that she sees embodied in Mr. Harper’s party.

    “Mr. Harper’s policies are not just a threat to Canada, but to the world,”
    she said.

    The Think Twice Coalition — which included Maude Barlow of the Council of
    Canadians, housing advocate Cathy Crowe, CAW head Buzz Hargrove as well as
    representatives from women’s groups, childcare advocates and the Canadian
    of Students — said they have “become alarmed that Canadians do not know
    about the policies of Conservatives and Stephen Harper.”

    A Tory government, said York University professor Barbara Cameron, would
    be able to
    “hobble permanently the capacity of the federal government to act for the
    welfare of Canadians.”

    Ms. Barlow, who has previously criticized Mr. Martin’s Liberal government
    for having
    close ties to the U.S. administration, said that Mr. Harper would implement a
    “Bush-style Conservative government in Canada.

    “The Bush revolution is moving north and its name is Stephen Harper,” she
    said. “A
    Harper government would heed the voices of the evangelical Christian right
    ensconced in the Conservative party here in Canada to emulate a war on
    withdrawing rights and reproductive freedoms.”

    When asked if it was possible for Canadians to study the party platforms
    and make an
    educated choice to vote Conservative, Mr. Hargrove said it was not.

    “Stephen Harper has sleepwalked people through this election, hiding
    exactly what he
    believes and what he’s going to do,” said Mr. Hargrove, who has previously
    Mr. Martin.

    He dismissed the idea the Think Twice panel’s interests would be better
    served by
    vocally endorsing the NDP, rather than encouraging the public to vote “to
    another party.

  3. Well. That news release clears everything up.

  4. I have no idea what May might have in store, strategy wise, in this election, but I’ll point out that Harper held many positions as head of the NCC that he abandoned on becoming leader of the CPC. The media took that more-or-less (and only more-or-less) in stride.

    To some extant, the public pronouncements of the leadership of an organisation reflect the communal position of the org, and not the position of the individual. (Hey, that’s politics, right, in the broadest sense.)

    Of course, hopefully the leadership only gets to that position becuase they agree with at least the org’s general thrust, policy- and strategy-wise.

  5. Paul

    Is that the entirety of the press release? And we are supposed to take that as the final word. Pull the other one, Elizabeth.

    I wonder why Greens are getting so coy about their intentions all of a sudden when just a day or two ago they were promoting themselves as a breath of fresh air to democracy in Canada when they were allowed into the debate. Seems like ‘same old, same old’ to me.

  6. Wow, what a pointless news release. May is really clueless, and I think it will show in the debates.

  7. Couldn’t agree more, sf. Bad move to get in on the debates. Guerilla warfare (metaphorically speaking) would be more effective.

    I’ve never heard May speak, but from her printed statements she seems slightly unhinged.

    ““Mr. Harper’s policies are not just a threat to Canada, but to the world.”

    The whole Cassandra thing might appeal to the grassroots, but the average voter is not going to believe that the PM is bent on world destruction.

  8. Wow, funny that she would release that on the very same day that La Presse’s Joel-Denis Bellavance is reporting that Ms. May, as a part of her deal with Mr. Dion, will formally throw her support behing him just in time for the end of the campaign.


    May prête à tout pour battre Harper

    La chef du Parti vert, Elizabeth May, demandera à ses troupes dans le dernier sprint de la campagne électorale de mettre tout leur poids politique derrière les candidats libéraux de Stéphane Dion dans certaines circonscriptions où la lutte est serrée afin de bloquer la route aux conservateurs de Stephen Harper.

    Cette démarche attendue de Mme May fait partie intégrante du pacte de non-agression conclu entre la leader du Parti vert et le chef libéral Stéphane Dion en avril 2007, a appris La Presse hier.

  9. I think we’ve become conspiracy addicts. What she said in the press release was probably true, but hey, we do need those “secret sources” and conspiracies or we’d be very unhappy people.

    I don’t trust this secret source thing…who’s to say a journalist just makes something up and leans on the secret sources say stuff.

  10. Maybe the press can badger Stephen Harper and Jack Layton to issue press releases:

    Jack Layton reports that I have had no deal with the Conservative Party beyond keeping the Green Party leader out of the debates.

    Stephen Harper, likewise no other deals with the NDP.

  11. Mouseland revisited Election 2008 Edition


    So in the spirit of the moment, here comes an updated tag line for Mouseland, that very famous speech given by Tommy Douglas, voted most famous Canadian.

    Mouseland 2008 edition

    And when they couldn’t take that anymore, they voted the white cats out and put the black ones in again.

    Then they went back to the white cats.

    Then to the black cats.

    They even tried half black cats and half white cats. And they called that coalition.


    And as Tommy said,

    You see, my friends, the trouble wasn’t with the colour of the cat. The trouble was that they were cats. And because they were cats, they naturally looked after cats instead of mice.

  12. C’mon guys, give the Greens credit. No way that press release prints out onto a second piece of paper!

    Any Canadian voter is now entitled to a FULL accounting of the so-called leaders’ courtesy agreement. Even non-wacko conspiracy non-theorists are permitted to wonder whether “wholesale abdication of own party in favour of Liberal messiah” figures in the courtesy agreement.

    Agree that May / the Greens were better off politically by NOT being in the debates. Much more of a “persecuted underdog” story line available that way. Now, god forbid, all 40,000 English Canadians NOT watching the American VP debate are gonna expect some coherent policy from podium number five.

  13. Curious said: “Wow, funny that she would release that on the very same day…”

    Um… funny that? How about “in direct response to”?

  14. Gawd, Layton and Harper must really be running scared with all this stuff going on just because May got into the debates. I see the NDP and CPC blogs, as well as their mouthpieces, are circulating an edited tape of May meant to look like she agrees with a statement that Canadians are stupid when she actually said she agreed with the idea that some politicians think Canadians are too stupid to try to sell a carbon tax plan to. Obviously May must not agree, since that is exactly what she is doing.

    So they edit a tape to make it look like she means something she doesn’t, and now speak of deals where May is going to say something to Canadians and like sheep we will all follow. Harper and Layton must think May is so dangerous to put in all this effort at attacking her within hours of her being allowed in the debates.

    That May must be one heck of a convincing woman. Guess we had better watch the debates, hey! She must be almost as scary to Layton as Dion is to Harper.

    BTW, now I understand why the NDP website used to run the same stupid attack ads on Dion as the CPC — it must have been part of the deal. They got a discount when they plastered the same shrugging photo over their sites. What a tag team duo.

    What will they do next so that Canadians will not listen to whatever May has to say? After all, May might say that both cap and trade and carbon tax costs consumers! They can’t let a whole year’s work go down the drain, just because their plan to exclude May didn’t work. Classic smear campaign going on, or didn’t you notice? Too much in the midst of it?

  15. Jan, too many cats! Are you talking about the deal between Harper and Layton over the past year to keep May out of the debates or the deal between Dion and May not to run candidates in each others riding?

    Or some secret deal which hasn’t been revealed yet?

  16. Is the American VP debate on in the same time-slot? If so, what on earth are the networks thinking?!?

  17. Ryan, I have not seen times, but I have heard media discussion about the conflict between Canadian PM English Debate and USA VP Debate.

  18. I think Jack Layton should endorse NDP friendly Liberal candidates over his own. Eventually, he can roll over and play dead to Stephane Dion’s Liberal Party.

    Just kidding.

  19. um, there was no deal to keep May out. And remember Duceppe agreed too. In fact the all the leaders had the same opinion in the last election as well, in some ways nothing has changed.

    Does anyone else see a resemblance between May and Orchard? As part of the coalition, she was endorsing the NDP, and now the Libs, but is the leader of the Greens (perhaps b/c no one else wanted her?) Everyone was surprised when Orchard wound up in the PC party, but it was because he tried to take over other places and no one would have him.

  20. “No truck or trade with the Canadian Alliance”

  21. There was a typo. It was supposed to read:

    “there is no deal with the Liberal Party beyond the leader’s curtsy arrangement”

  22. No truck or trade with the Canadian Alliance…

  23. Sunny12, Duceppe issued a statement as soon as the media consortium said they were excluding May because some leaders said they would boycott otherwise. Ducceppe’s statement said he never threatened to boycott and he wouldn’t. Harper would not answer and Layton said it was the media consortium, not him, keeping May out.

    Then Canadians spoke and even though Harper’s team said they phoned Layton Wed morning to see if he would cave (the answer was no), Layton decided to cave in the afternoon. As soon as Harper found out, he caved too, and both his campaign chairs, as well as some “top insiders” spilled the beans and said they had been doing this to support Layton and it came out they had been attempting to stop May for over a year. They referred to “an agreement” with Layton. You can hear it on the National, Newsworld, and read some of it in various newspapers on the web.

    Harper and Layton had a backroom deal to keep May out of the debates. What other deals they made, we do not know, although one can make some pretty good guesses.

  24. catherine, how about you adjust your tin foil hat and then check your facts and TVO’s website; they have already confirmed the authenticity of what Stephen Taylor posted

  25. John g, why don’t you post a link?

    I listened to the original tape, so I know what May said as I described above. In the context of her supporting a carbon tax and being willing to sell it to Canadians it makes no sense to interpret her “I agree with that assessment” to the only the end of the previous phrase (C are stupid). Given her tone of the following statement and the overall content, she obviously is referring to agreement with the entire previous statement about politicians. Listen to the full tape on TVO ather than the cropped part.

  26. john g, okay, found the post at TVO about this. I hadn’t even realized some people thought the “they” was “I”, as I wouldn’t make much sense in the context of the sentence and it sounded like a clear “they” to me.

    As to exactly what May meant by “I fundamentally agree with that assessment”, TVO said they would ask her tonight.

    Let’s see if she thinks what you think she thinks.

    My, my, my, aren’t those who wanted to keep her out of the debates in a frenzy over they’s and I’s and that’s. May had better remember to cross all her t’s when she speaks.

  27. Poor Catherine, The Greens threaten a blogger with libel where all Buckdog did was post a utube clip. The utube clip is not doctored. But what is worse is that the May Green’s threaten a blogger with a SLAPP suit. And you think that’s ok?

    What about all that defence of free speech, democracy. So Suppressing free-speech is ok? Sorry, if EMay thinks that the tape has been doctored and she didn’t say what people who have listened to tape think she said, she can take it too the courts. She appears that in a short 5 days that she is sue happy.

    As for your mischief of making an accusation that Harper and Layton conspired together – behind closed doors – to keep Ms. May out of the debates, do you have a tape of that? Just wondering? If you do, you should post it on utube.
    Of course, I wonder when they would have got around to doing it. Was it before or after Layton and the New Democrats were standing up to Harper on votes in the House and when the Mr. Abstain Dion and the libs were hiding?

    Actually I supported Ms. May in the debates because there is nothing I would like to see is when she puts her big foot in her mouth. She appears good at it. We all want to make sure that poor Ms. May is heard, besides thinking that Canadians are stupid?

  28. “Leaders’ courtesy” is a pretty way to describe the profound destruction of democratic freedom.

    If Liberal Lizzie got her way (ie, parties do not run candidates against the leaders of other parties), and I happened to live in her riding, I would be effectively forced to accept her as my MP without ever having had a say.

    No. Sorry. I want the right to vote for or against my potential MP. Liberal Lizzie can take her profound sense of overweaning entitlement and go back to the USA.

  29. May endorsed Dion / the Liberals / the Green shift about 20 times in the space of 5 minutes on CTV’s Question Period today.

    In particular, she thinks she can help Dion by explaining the Green Shift and selling it to voters in the debate.

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