Tuesday, April 29, 2008

On opportunities

Last weekend, I noted that there's some reason to suspect that the NDP is taking steps toward a more open form of politics than we currently see on the federal scene. Crawford Kilian is less hopeful, but offers an analysis of what any party could stand to gain by moving past narrow scripting:
If Canadian politicians study Obama too, they must realize that becoming a two-way, interactive democracy will require big changes -- and probably the biggest will be personnel changes at the top.
Canadian politicians will eventually figure out how to apply Obama's armoury of communication skills to our own battles. Some party will realize it needs a new leader -- not a web-savvy Trudeau or Mulroney, but a person of our own time who understands both us and the media we use as a communicating community.

That party will stay in power in this century the way Mackenzie King's stayed in power in the last.
The lack of any strong moves in the direction of a more interactive political model strikes me as especially surprising in the context of the current federal stalemate - which should seemingly leave every party looking for the next great possible advantage, rather than clinging to a status quo which nobody's particularly happy with.

Particularly with the Cons and Libs clinging to their nominally risk-averse strategies in hope that the other will stumble in an election campaign, though, the door is wide open for the NDP to present a stark contrast to the one-way messaging of Harper and Dion. And the opportunity is one which the NDP should be happy to take.

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