Thursday, August 31, 2017

Leadership 2017 Platform Analysis - Guy Caron

If Niki Ashton stands out in having received relatively little attention for her policy development, Guy Caron looks to be on the opposite end of the spectrum.

Having justifiably portrayed himself as the policy wonk candidate and built his campaign largely around a basic income proposal which continues to provoke important discussion, Caron hasn't faced much attention in other policy areas. And so he's been able to avoid answering for what's otherwise been a fairly thin policy agenda.

Aside from the basic income, other points distinct to Caron include:
- specific refugee protections for climate migrants;
- a 7-hour work day for jobs within federal jurisdiction;
- a list of new revenue options including taxes on foreign e-commerce profits and limiting RRSP contributions; and
- Quebec-oriented commitments including the application of Bill 101 language requirements to federally-regulated industries in Quebec along with a bilingualism requirement for Supreme Court judges.

But Caron largely stops at his areas of specific strength: his Quebec policy is his lone effort at outreach to a specific segment of the progressive movement (in stark contrast to the range of proposals developed by Niki Ashton and Jagmeet Singh), and his strict avoidance of matters within provincial jurisdiction leaves him with little room to offer proposals on social programs aside from the basic income.

Now, one can argue that the result is that Caron's overall policy package is internally consistent and easy to judge in terms of his personal priorities. (And lest there be any doubt, Caron has expressed his personal support for additional progressive ideas during the course of the debates, while identifying the impossibility of implementing them solely at the federal level.) But it remains to be seen whether members will want to be bound by Caron's limited scope of operations.


  1. Guy Caron has said that he supports Pharmacare and Free tuition, maybe dentacare too, not sure, but that they have to be negiotated with the provinces, so not only will that make providing honest details hard, but it will take time.

    But his BI can help with these issues, and can go out the door right away, and will help with those issues in the mean time.

    And his environmental policy is far more extensive then you've, made it out to be, such as a carbon tax, a tax on foreign trade from countries, that don't have a carbon tax, massive investment in green infrastructure, and so on.

    And his worker first policies include $15 an hour minimum wage, EI reform including reducing the required hours to 360, a reduction from an 8 hour work day, to a 7 hour work day, and so much more.

    The difference between Guy Carons official platform and the others is that Guy Caron really only lists what the federal government can do itself, while the, others promise things that require provincial cooperation.

    To learn of other stuff, one has to listen to the debates, to get a sense of where he, plans to go on issues that require more intergovernmental cooperation.

    1. There's certainly more to Caron's policies (like those for all the candidates). I'll note that I focus on the areas of distinctiveness, and a lot of Caron's environmental and labour policies are similar to those of Ashton and Singh.

      That said, I'll note that Caron specifically mentions constitutional negotiations in his Quebec policy - so he's obviously not averse to including and considering areas which require multi-level discussion.

  2. Also one shouldn't under estimate the vastness of the benefits of BI, from pulling people out of poverty, to helping people afford healthcare options, like medicine, to making it easier to get an education with massive debt and, better grades, and so on.

    And that Guy Caron HASN'T focused on identity politics and instead focused on policies that help everyone no matter their race, gender,sex, religion, and sexual orientiation is an ASSET, not a mistake.

    It doesn't mean he won't support a law against racial profiling, it just means that he doesn't get distracted from the meat of his plans in the bog of the culture war like Jagmeet Singh and Niki Ashton.

    There approach has often distracted from there core economic/social safety net/environmental policies, HEAVILY.

    Jagmeet is now embroiled in issues with India over Khalanstani supporters and Niki once again find herself running in circles in the name of political correctness, over issues like cultural appropriation, Wan Kinew DV history (alleged), and walking back and forth on Secularism and Islam in Quebec, confusing and offending all sides.

    Let's be honest solid economic, environmental, and social safety net issues have far more profound effect on minorities then banning racial profiling or gleefully calling yourself an intersectional ecofeminist.

    BI alone would help pull poorer minorities of poverty, and help even the opportunities to get an education to poorer minorities, and so in, but in way that helps whites in need to, so it doesn't create a back lash our get bogged down in a culture war.

    Secular Talk explained this better then me along time ago. This is also why universal inclusive programs are better then targeted ones when possible.

    What do you think is an easier sell, universal free tuition paid for by Federal and Provincial governments, or free tuition for Black Canadian and First Nation students only, payed for by the university, which would drive up the cost for Asian and White Students because that would be the only way a university could do that without governmental help (this is based on a real proposal by Black Canadian students at the University of Geulph).

    Focused on rising all boats, not on what divides us, but rather unites us, and a lot of the other stuff will be fixed in the process.

    1. The distinction is a fair one, but I don't agree with your either-or view of it. Basic income can reasonably be seen as providing a counterweight against multiple forms of discrimination, but it's still important to reach out to marginalized groups - both to identify the areas where further action is needed to move toward equality and inclusivity, and to promote their political participation to be able to win a mandate for universal policies in the first place.

    2. I'm fine with reaching out to marginalized groups is fine, but it's been so poorly done by many people lately, in a way that has invovled attacking white people, which lead to a backlash that laid the ground work for the alt right, which hurt the very marginalized groups they wanted to help.

      You tell a white men whose suffering and in pain to check his white male priveledge, your alienating someone who could have been an ally with another approach.

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    4. I'll definitely push back there: a lot of self-serving right-wingers have tried to pretend that any advocacy for minorities is somehow an attack on white people, but that doesn't mean we should accept that framing.

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