Such a refreshing change from flirting with Quebec separatists


Meet Ryan Cleary, former editor of the quirky, very good Newfoundland paper The Independent, who is running for the NDP in Loyola Hearn’s riding. Here’s what he wrote four months ago:

I don’t want to seem ungrateful, but now that we’re rolling in the cash it may be time to consider breaking away from the country of Canada.

There’s more….


Such a refreshing change from flirting with Quebec separatists

  1. Gotta love that freeloading attitude. We’re with you when we need you, but after that, see ya! That’s the spirit. Nice to see what equalization has bought us.
    Disclaimer: I realize not all Newfoundlanders are like that guy.

  2. Kind of on a par with the welfare recipient who does have a job, only it’s a “cash-only” service kind of job, you see, so no income taxes to pay, and woe-is-me “official” poverty to justify the handout.

    On second thought, I now see why the NDP would find in this person such an appealing candidate.

  3. I think they should hire some independence consultants from Alberta to help. Maybe Harper knows some former Canadian Alliance types who need the work.

    In 1949 Britain was ready to send a gunship over to Newfoundland in case people started to riot over the Canadian land grab.

    Sigh. The good old days of national unity.

  4. Cleary spent years arguing that NL should separate because it gets equalization, then because it doesn’t get enough, and then because it won’t get it at all.

  5. Why is it that the people who post comments here don’t get subtly?

    “Maybe even fit John Cabot with a FREE NFLD. T-shirt, G-string and stocking cap.”

    Yes, this man is _actually_ arguing for separation! Rally around the flag!

    Also, people should be aware that this Hour is 22 Minutes is not a real news program.

  6. Independence? No. Firewall? Maybe.

  7. Cleary has been far from subtle during his journalism career, from his days turning a TV listings magazine into a vehicle for Newfoundland separatism in the 1990s, through to… well, turning a Newfoundland separatist newspaper (the name of the paper and its masthead too subtle for you?) into a vehicle for Newfoundland separatism in the 2000s.

  8. Like many Newfoundlanders will tell you, you have to be allowed to become a part of something before you can leave it. Is that subtle enough for ya…

  9. Hey, before you leave NFLD, don’t forget you promised to help Ontario.

    Hey, maybe Ontario should leave. The other provinces don’t like Ontario anyway.

  10. Of course none of these commenters have even the faintest knowledge of Newfoundland’s sorry circumstance in Confederation. None have any idea of Canada’s exclusive jurisdiction over the northern cod stock and so its part in one of the greatest enviromnental crimes in history. How many understand how Upper Churchill works to grease the machinery in Quebec? I wonder how many have even been to Newfoundland. And I doubt they have any idea what “Equalization” really is, they certainly have no understanding who the chief beneficiaries have been.

    BTW a Liberal will likely win the district in which Cleary is running (a less separatist NDP candidate with win an adjoining seat.)

    The prospect of Newfoundland and Labrador leaving Canada within the next 20 years is considerable. But you would have to visit the place to know that. At least Canada will be free of the burden.

  11. Well said de,

    Let’s see now, last year out of a 13 billion dollar pot for equalization (which all taxpayers pay for through income taxes, including those in Newfoundland and Labrador) Quebec received over 8 billion while Newfoundland and Labrador received on 12 million. Hmmm… I wonder where the rest went?

    Yeah, I guess NL really is a drain on Canada.

  12. Hey Mark, Let’s not forget the billions Hydro Quebec gets from Labrador’s upper churchill hydro facility while NL is allowed to keep only a few million to keep the turbines spinning or the fact that other provinces in Canada actually control their oil resources while Ottawa controls NL’s.

    Man what a drain this place is on the Country.

  13. NL controls the same resources within its borders that any other province controls within theirs.

    Actually, a few more. NL has a territorial sea as part of the Offshore cases. No other province does. NL has joint management of offshore oil and gas. Only NS among the other coastal provinces has that.

  14. I would support Ontario separatism.

    In fact, the guy I met and talked to on the plane the other day who was from Guelph would support Toronto separatism.

    Pretty much everyone in Canada outside of T.O. could get behind that one.

  15. Mark Thomas, what about in previous years of equalization, when NL’s own source revenues were lower? Don’t cherry-pick your data.

  16. Only ever in the millions David, never billions like Quebec gets every year. Good try at cloudin the truth. By the way, Joint Management of the offshore still means Ottawa has to agree on projects, Does that happen in other provinces and don’t give me the BS about being offshore, that offshore zone came into Canada with NL when it was dragged into confederation otherwise Canada would never have had access to it.

  17. These central Canadians are not even worth the waste of time it takes to respond to them Mark. Don’t even bother. They’ve been so brainwashed about NL over the years they can’t see the forest for the trees.

  18. Actually, in 2005 alone, it was over $2.2 Billion. Newfoundland has always had a special deal on Equalization, has always received more than any other province per capita, and received this massive overpayment two years ago as an advance on all the Equalization paper that they wouldn’t have otherwise qualified for over the next several years. Newfoundland also has highest dependency on transfers to individuals of any province in Canada. It has been that way since the early 1960s. As a proud Newfoundlander I can honestly say that my province is far better off inside Canada than it would have been outside. Anyone who thinks otherwise is simply unfit for office. Period.

  19. The “per-capita” arguement is facile as Newfoundland’s population is so small. You could just as easily say “per square mile” and get the opposite result. Try “per dollar exported”. To even go down the road, in the face of the Quebec case, is ludicrous.

    If former Soviet satellites, like say, Georgia or the Baltic states, seek self-determination it’s liberty from a colonial power. If Canada’s the colonizer the terms change.

    A Harper Govt. will accelerate the inevitable.

    If Newfoundland has been such a drag on Canada what can possibly be the argument for keeping it? That it now has oil wealth? That’s welcoming.

    George is right, the lies and myths have become so much a part of the debate it’s not worth it. I will heed his advice.

  20. Who said Newfoundland was a drag on Canada? Equalization is based on a per need/per capita. Are you suggesting that a province with 15 times the population as Newfoundland should get the same amount of money? That would be kinda dumb wouldn’t it?

    No one is “keeping” Newfoundland. We can leave if we choose. I choose not to because, like most Newfoundlanders, I am far better off in Canada than I would be out of it. Go ask your grandparents.

  21. Actually de, the more I think about it, the stupider you sound. Please, why not post how you think Equalization should be distributed. You seem to be suggesting that the provinces with the most oil wealth and the lowest population should get the most money. Sounds pretty sensible. C’mon give us yer best shot. Prove you’re not an idiot.

  22. Maybe we Equalization should be on a per-idiot basis. That way de’s home town could get the most.

  23. Richard, you proved it.

  24. Joint management happens in NS as well. In any other province — Quebec or B.C. — Natural Resources Canada has total control.

  25. Looks like you got your facts messed up, Paul.

    The first link you posted says that Cleary “was going after the NDP nomination” – there’s zero indication that he is actually “running for the NDP” as you posted. Lots of people run for various parties nominations that the parties don’t want near them, but heh that’s democracy (at least for some parties).

    A quick search shows that the NDP does not yet have a candidate in that riding:

    And The Telegram ran a story just today about the race for the nomination between aforementionned Cleary who “said he was a supporter of Hearn before the last election” and “Sierra Club Atlantic chairman Fred Winsor said he will also seek the candidacy. Winsor said he’s been an NDP supporter for many years, and he hopes to be able to bring strong representation to parliament.”

    Hmmm… Who do you think the good dippers of St-John will elect as their candidate? 3 words: Clearly not Cleary!!

    Hope you fix your post asap to take away your unwarranted claims.

  26. Dear Newfoundland posters. Please do not confuse “Tory supporters” with “Central Canadians”. After all, we have to suffer their braying ignorance daily too. Sincerely, a non-Tory supporter from central Canada.

  27. Sara – “running for the NDP” could just as easily mean “running for the NDP nomination”.

  28. And Greg steps up and illustrates why the throw Toronto(Toronto being a convenient shorthand for arrogant, out of touch Liberal/Left unpleasant sort of person) out of Canada movement continues to grow.

  29. “Running for the NDP” does not just as easily mean “Running for the NDP nomination”. These are two different statements about the role of a person in a party.

    The miniumum Paul needs to do is add the word nomination to his post – now that’s easy. But adding it would make the entire post irrelevant since lots of wingnuts run for party nominations and it doesn’t mean a thing.

  30. You upper Canadians and your attitude. You talk of fairness, how you “helped out” during tough times. i will tell you what you helped yourself too, 100% of the manufacturing industry. Where was Newfoundland’s share of the auto industry all these years, or Saskatchewan’s for that matter?

    You have been bilking the hinterlands for a century, and your reign of terror is over.

  31. Hilarious. You people (Torontonians advocating separation, Ontarioans, Newfoundlanders, Quebecois, etc) sound like a teenager threatening to take off unless their mean old parents leave them alone. Guess what, the door’s wide open, and it has been that way for a long time.

    If anyone in this wonderful country wants to leave, they are free to. Who said Canada would deny anyone self determination? We are probably the only advanced democracy in the world that actually has a law that sets out the terms of divorce and dissolution of our country (the “Clarity Act”).Funny how no one has left yet, although oddly enough they won’t shut up with the threats about it.

  32. de, your comparison of the situation in Newfoundland to that of former Soviet republics is not only a melodramatic exaggeration, but also an insult to those people who did suffer under the oppression of the USSR.

    Yes, people in Newfoundland and other provinces have grievances against the federal government, many completely legitimate, but to compare that to what happened in Eastern Europe and Central Asia belittles the suffering those people endured. Ottawa never sent tanks into St. John’s and Newfoundland residents have not been denied the full rights of citizenship because they were Newfoundlanders.

    If you want to talk about poor and unfair economic policies fine, I’ll probably agree with you on most points. But flamboyant rhetoric about separation does nothing to bring us to a viable solution and only helps spread animosity on both sides.

    And I’m a left-leaning Nova Scotian, before anyone starts with that “Central Canadian/Harper supporter” nonsense.

  33. Those of you that think NL hasn’t benefited from Confederation are idiots. Those that think Canada didn’t benefit more from Confederation than NL would have to gain approximately 60 IQ points to even be deemed an idiot. By the way, those in Ontario (I lived there for 20 years, so I know you are out there) who believe that NL is a drain on the Canadian economy, please remember that somewhere in the neighbourhood of 250,000-300,000 Newfoundlanders helped to build the economy of Ontario by working for Ontarian companies, spending their disposable income in Ontario, paying Ontario municipal and provincial taxes and contributing overall to the benefit and betterment of Ontario. BTW, who do you think paid to educate this portion of the Ontario workforce? NL, that’s who! That’s just one of the NL resources that has been exploited by Canada to the detriment of NL. As for the “ungrateful” comments…we could also say the same. We’ve made contributions to this country that go totally unnoticed by our mainland brothers and sisters mainly because they prefer to regurgitate the prejustices of their pappies and grandpappies rather than use intelligence and critical thought. The positive thing, though, is that we’ll soon no longer have to be like Oliver. If we want more soup, we’ll just take it, we will not have to ask the mean man up in front. As well, our Newfound wealth has exposed what the Mainlanders really think of us. I say it’s time to lance that pimple called Canada off NL’s butt!

  34. Hey Sara:

    Now that he IS the candidate, what do you have to say for yourself.

  35. Oh, Sara?….Sara?…

  36. “…lots of wingnuts run for party nominations and it doesn’t mean a thing.”

    Now we understand why the NDP, in approximately 300 out of 308 ridings in this country do not hold democratic nominations. Because the wingnuts usually win…

  37. Actually it is NDP party policy to hold democratic nominations. For example, when Broadbent decided to run again in 2004, he still had to win the party nomination first in the riding. It’s Liberals and Tories who nominate candidates.

  38. Sunny12 – The NDP appears to run many (most?) of its democratic nominations like Cuba runs its Presidential elections – one candidate allowed.

  39. Sunny12 – I challenge you to get beyond your own fingers and toes in counting off the number of ridings in which the NDP has actually nominated a candidate by way of a democratic election (i.e. a balloted choice between to possibilities)

  40. Fitting that you would have to reach back 4 years to find your example, given that this is our third election in that time span.

  41. Ah! Richard you are truly the Idiot.When you tell a NLer to go ask thier grandparents. I can’t so I”ll just go by what my dear departed mother said way back in 1995 at the age of 83 “I never thought I’d live to see the day a man couldn’t catch a Cod for his supper”

    My parents we’re married 63 yrs,raised 12 kids and NEVER collected Welfare,meaning that my Mother was raising the kids mostly on her own because Dad had to Leave home to work.That was in the late ’50s & ’60s and still today Kids are crying because Dad has to “go Away” to feed his Family.

    No I don’t blame all NL problems on Ottawa for the NL “Leaders” sure didn’t fight much for NL. Danny Williams is Harper’s worst nightmare, a Rich lawyer who isn’t Afraid of Harper and a Rhodes Scholar that’s 1st a “Proud NLer”.

    I’ve lived in Ontario for 38 yrs,but my HOME is the Rugged Rock in the North Atlantic and the Rugged People that have hearts as vast as the Ocean that surrounds it. I doubt that there are not too many NLers across Canada that given the chance to return home wouldn’t.My brother just retired there after living in the West for over 30 yrs and I’ll be joining him in a few yrs. I hope it isn’t just retirees returning we need to get the young people employed they’re the Furture. Sorry for the Long rant.

  42. Sue – What does welfare have to do with anything?

    And by the sounds of it I’m the NLer, you’re an Ontarian.

    In 1949 Newfoundland had few roads, few communities had running water or sewer. the only part of its economy not run by greedy merchants (like DW) was dependent on the war effort, which had now ended. Only rich people could afford doctors, and well into the 1970s many communities relied on foreign missionaries to provide basic health services. Without Confederation there is no pavement, no electricity for a generation, no university, literacy rates that were on par with Latin America and the Caribbean.

    I’m leaving NL soon. Danny’s no better than the crowd he replaced. Unless you’re a government employee or one of his buddies, there’s nothing in this “growth” for the rest of us. He’s only ever seen NLers as people to make a buck off of, so to heck with him. I hear democracies are generally nice places to live. Figured I’d leave here soon and give that a try.

    No need to apologze for the long rant. Go have a long roar while you’re at it. Then when you’re done, go read a book.

    • This is some time on since the actual post but Richard you truly are a Dick. No universities until confederation? Maybe Memorial was around!? Check it out. You should be proud of whats happening here and everything thats been achieved here long before Canada joined us. You seem to paint a beautiful picture of what Canada has done for poor old Newfoundland. We would have gotten to where we are today without them, just in another way.

  43. “I’ve lived in Ontario for 38 yrs,but my HOME is the Rugged Rock in the North Atlantic and the Rugged People that have hearts as vast as the Ocean that surrounds it. I doubt that there are not too many NLers across Canada that given the chance to return home wouldn’t.”

    Sue, I’d just like to point out that a great many people living in Ontario would jump at the chance to move to NL if they could afford to.

    The Rugged Rock filled with the most friendly and helpful people, I think, on the planet. Why wouldn’t we all want to live there?

    I’ve been an Ontarian for all of my life.

  44. Hey, I just stumbled across this discussion by accident…

    I’m a 16 year old highschool student in Mississauga, Ontario.

    I realize that many of you would consider me, and others like me, to be out of touch with the rest of Canada… and its problems.

    Think what you will.

    But the fact remains, it hurts me everytime I read these “rants” about seperating from Canada. I feel almost as if something I so fervently believe in (and that has so persistently been pounded into my brain) has been falsified. As if the “golden promise” of confederation that we are taught in school is nothing more than a joke.

    I and my generation are stuck in a Canada that apparently doesn’t feel like being Canada.

    It just really bugs me.

  45. Max- You have no idea how glad I am to see someone your age (and a fellow Mississaugan no less) on here, engaging in discussion and, frankly, giving a crap! Too many in your generation simply aren’t willing to put in the effort to do that sort of thing. There is good news and bad news for you in my opinion.
    The bad is that reality (as you’ll find out more and more) is rarely like the nice titles they have in your history texts “The Golden Promise…” or “Exploring New frontiers…” Nothing as big and complex as Canada is simple and thus you’ll get problems (and we’ve had plenty!). Some people will never see things your way no matter how right you are or how right you think you are.
    The good news is that Canada, for all its faults and for all its detractors,, really is a great country. We have lots to be proud of both historically and currently. In spite of those that want to rip the country up Canada has survived 3 constitutional crisises,, an ongoing seperatist movement (that seems to be declining), terrorism from within (FLQ in the 70’s) and a number of other issues that have divided us. There is no gurantee we’ll always hold it together but we’ve done remarkably well so far.
    The best news is that you don’t have to be a by stander! Not now and not ever. You have the ability to have a say in this country, to take action to improve it and to try to shape it into the kind of place you think it ought to be. You are getting informed, so get involved and active in politics or in community organizations (if you aren’t already) and don’t let people tell you what Canada is, you do your best to make it what it should be.
    There’s my pep talk for the night. Sorry if it was a bit much but I get really stoked about getting the youth involved in the life of their country.

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