Friday, April 27, 2007

Torture Issue Reveals Liberal Weaknesses

Hypocrisy, thy name is STILL Liberal

Watching the Liberal party, it becomes apparent that they so desperately want to be Democrats.

After sending Canadian troops to Afghanistan in the absence of any democratic decision-making process, the Liberals recently introduced a motion into the House of Commons that would force the withdrawal of Canadian troops in 2009.

The Liberals have also jumped on another issue: torture.

Allegations that Afghani prison officials have been torturing prisoners has sent the Liberals scurrying to make the most of the opportunity.

On CTV’s Mike Duffy Live, Liberal deputy leader Michael Ignatieff addressed a question regarding the Al Qaida and Taliban training manuals, which instruct captured fighters to lie about being tortured in order to manipulate courts against their captors. He responded by telling Duffy that the Liberal party believed in the principle of “innocent until proven guilty”.

Unless, of course, you’re an Afghani prison guard – or the Conservative government.

Even in the absence of credible evidence of torture, Ignatieff has insisted that the allegations of torture are well-founded. And naturally, he would. The issue of torture has proven to be a very productive political issue for the Democrats against the Republicans in the United States.

Yet, when allegations of torture were raised against the United States, Ignatieff was conditionally supportive of torture.

In “Lesser Evils”, Ignatieff wrote, “To defeat evil, we may have to traffic in evils: indefinite detention of suspects, coercive interrogations, targeted assassinations, even pre-emptive war. These are evils because each strays from national and international law and because they kill people or deprive them of freedom without due process. They can be justified only because they prevent the greater evil.”

Essentially, Ignatieff wrote that “coercive interrogations” (torture) could be justified in the face of a greater evil, so long as it were permissible under the rule of law. Not only did Ignatieff write in conditional support of torture, he also wrote in support of legalizing it!

To make matters worse for the Liberals, the current detainee transfer agreement that does not grant Canadian officials the privileges to monitor and visit prisoners in Afghanistan was actually negotiated by the Liberals.

Unfortunately for the Liberals (ironically Canada’s Republicans) they aren’t the Democrats. They aren’t even Democrat lite. Their hypocrisy only reveals deeper tendencies toward political opportunism.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Kyoto Protocol : Hypocrisy Thy Name is Liberal

Liberals all talk on climate change

The truth, as the old adage says, hurts. This being said, the current Kyoto debate in Canada should send the Liberal party scurrying for a helmet.

The Liberals have certainly found Kyoto to be a politically productive issue. Despite their recent branding of a Conservative party election war room as a “fear factory”, the Liberals recently released a new ad clearly aimed at provoking terror amongst Canadians, on the issue of climate change (the terrified-looking baby is a nice – but hypocritical – touch).

Yet, when one looks closer at the Liberal party stance on Kyoto, one finds layers upon layers of hypocrisy, threatening to undermine what was a very tender policy point to begin with.

The Liberals point with pride toward the December 2005 United Nations Climate Change Conference, wherein Stephan Dion brought 182 countries to agreement on further commitments to fight climate change.

For Dion, that’s pretty much where the story ends. Previously, on November 29, 2005, Paul Martin’s Liberal government – in which Stephan Dion served as minister of the environment – lost a confidence vote in the house of commons. Dion’s success at the Montreal conference was little more than an empty triumph of a dying government.

Equally unfortunately for Dion – and the Liberals – that isn’t where the story begins, either.

Under the Liberal government of Jean Chretien, Canada ratified the Kyoto protocol in 2002. Canada committed to 6% below 1990 levels by 2012 (interestingly, Chretien chose the 6% figure merely to one-up the American commitment of 5%). Yet, by 2004, greenhouse gas emissions had continued to rise until they were 27% above 1990 levels.

Under Stephan Dion, greenhouse gas emissions only continued to rise. This undoubtedly paints a less-than-flattering image of Stephan Dion: the man who could bring 182 countries together to agree to fight climate change, but who himself did nothing to actually do so.

Another revealing point is that posed by Liberal Ontario premier Dalton McGuinty (brother of Liberal party environmental critic David McGuinty).

McGuinty had previously promised to deactivate all of Ontario’s coal-fired power plants by 2007. McGuinty has extended this deadline to 2014 – two years after the deadlines laid out in the Kyoto protocol. Had McGuinty lived up to his original promise, Ontario would be 50-80 closer to its Kyoto targets.

This from the premier who accused the federal government of letting the Alberta oil industry “off easy”.

McGuinty – who, just to reiterate, supports Kyoto – has also demanded that Ontario’s car manufacturers be given favorable treatment. “we will not abide is any effort on the part of the national government to unduly impose greenhouse-gas emission reductions on the province of Ontario at the expense of our auto sector," McGuinty said.

McGuinty was, at the time, responding to Conservative musings about imposing emissions standards on Canadian car manufacturers similar to those in effect in California. According to a graph released by Environment Canada in 2004, transportation-related emissions accounted for 19% of Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions. The oil, gas and coal industries accounted for 20%.

In other words, McGuinty – a Kyoto supporter – was in favor of regulating an industry that produces 20% of Canada’s greenhouse gases, but not in favor of regulating cars – producers of 19% of Canada’s greenhouse gases.

Unfortunately for McGuinty, it’s all too similar to Quebec supporting Kyoto while it stands to profit from its hydroelectric resources (GHG free), while less fortunate provinces struggle to meet their share of Canada’s Kyoto targets.

If Canada is to meet its Kyoto targets, Ontarians – who support Kyoto – will have to make sacrifices as surely as Albertans will.

At the end of the day, however, it seems some Liberals have forgotten the purpose of the Kyoto protocol. On CTV’s Canada AM, David McGuinty (just to reiterate, Dalton’s brother), complained, “We as a country signed onto Kyoto and one of the mechanisms in the Kyoto Treaty is to allow our emitters to trade credits internationally between countries to help reduce the cost, per tonne, of greenhouse gases. This government has ruled that out."

Apparently, according to McGuinty, the Kyoto protocol was never about reducing greenhouse gas emissions. To McGuinty, Kyoto was about forcing industry to send their money to other countries in order to meet the government’s diplomatic obligations.

The Liberal party stance on Kyoto is nothing short of hypocrticial. While the Conservative government may need to work well outside the Kyoto deadlines in order to meet Canada’s obligations, it is Liberal inaction that has forced them to do so.

Which ultimately leaves Stephan Dion and the flying McGuinty brothers facing an unpleasant revelation: the truth hurts.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Kevin Potvin Lashes Out

Holy shit! He's gonna blow!

The nagging Kevin Potvin saga took a turn for the absurd today, as he abruptly added a column to the website for his Republic of East Vancouver website today.

Like any borderline-psychopathic ideologue with wounded pride, Potvin rages against those he deems his oppressors, derides his critics, and repeatedly threatens to sue.

Among his numerous targets are Peter O’Neil, who failed while attempting to interview Potvin for a piece regarding his disqualification as a Green Party candidate when Potvin, according to his own account, attempted to interview him. In his tirade, Potvin recounts, “he grew audibly distressed when I told him I am a journalist too, and I was in fact interviewing him at the same time.” According to Potvin, O’Neil terminated the interview after having been asked “if he is for or against corporatism and militarism. “I’m asking the questions!” he barked, before flatly refusing to answer anything further at all.”

He notes that the Vancouver Sun was “forced to print a correction explaining that the hapless and flustering O’Neil didn’t mean to fabricate the quote he couldn’t get from [Potvin].”

In a story published April 13, O’Neil attributes the comment “go, Osama, go!” to Potvin’s “Revolting Confession” article. In the original article Potvin also wrote (and I know this is merely reiterating on this blog, as I’ve already reproduced these comments once, but they are so astoundingly offensive they are somehow worth repeating once again), “Nor was I alone, I know for a fact, whenever I passed a TV or newspaper with a report on the ensuing US war to capture Osama bin Laden, and I secretly said to myself, "Go, Osama, Go!" I am happy he has eluded capture by the Americans. I am in love with those Afghans who, whenever asked, said, "He went that-a-way," and their fifty hands pointed in fifty different directions.”

Whatever O’Neil’s misquote was, Potvin should be able to forgive him. He was probably just taking Potvin’s advice, and using his emotions as a form of “mental shorthand”, and reconstructing Potvin’s comments as he remembered them.

Potvin also takes aim at Province columnist Michael Smyth. Potvin describes ”Greens Must Dump Pro-Al Qaida Candidate article as “libelous”. Unfortunately for Potvin, all of his comments are on the public record, and verifiable.

He also takes note with Smyth’s description of Potvin’s behaviour as “weird”. Potvin himself describes it as “dignity”. Suddenly, in Potvin’s mind, it’s dignified to accept an interview request from a journalist and insist that he shall be the one doing the interview. Weird, indeed.

Potvin complains that, “In his story, Smyth writes, “Potvin refused to take questions from reporters” to substantiate his claim I was running and hiding. So far, his boss, Roz Guggi, has refused to take questions from me regarding the libel they printed in his article.” Yet, by his own account, Potvin has refused to take any questions from reporters. He has insisted on asking the questions. Apparently, his journalistic instinct tells him that, in a situation wherein a political candidate has made incredibly outrageous – as well as just plain stupid – comments regarding 9/11, the really newsworthy event is that a reporter would as HIM a question. Wow.

Bruce Hutchinson also comes under fire. Or, rather, Brian Hutchinson comes under fire – but it’s OK, mr Potvin, it’s another b-name – whose mention of the behaviour of Potvin’s supporters Potvin dismisses with the following statement: “Could it really be that traumatic to face a couple of questions yourself after so gracelessly hounding me?”

Once again, mr Potvin might do well to remember that Brian Hutchinson isn’t the story – Potvin’s own comments about 9/11 are.

Lastly, Potvin lashes out at National Post columnist Lorne Gunter. Potvin decries Gunter’s “Greens’ answer to John Beck article as a “late hit” . Potvin insists that he is no worse than a “an Earth-abusing, pro-Bush, pro-NAFTA, pro-war type” like Gunter.

Potvin decries it all the entire time. Potvin would surely have everyone believe he is nothing more than a victim, suffering the slings and arrows of outrageous fortune. Unfortunately for Potvin, he has called this all upon himself – by refusing to adequately address and defend his comments, by refusing to answer questions, and by making boneheaded comments to begin with.

At the end of the day, Potvin is lucky. Opposition research (or “oppo” as experienced political strategists call it for shot) is a common practice in electoral campaigns today, and one can only imagine what the Conservative party or even the NDP would have done with something like this.

While incredibly amusing, Potvin’s latest outburst has probably established a new adage: “when the going gets tough, nearly-psychotic hateful ideologues pout.”

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Jim Harris - King of Wishful Thinking

Harris apparently not a math major

According to Elizabeth May, her decision to compete against Peter MacKay in Nova Scotia’s Central Nova riding has been described by some as, ”stupid, egomaniacal, deluded, courageous (but still stupid), or selfish.”

These may or may not be fair assessments of May’s chances in Central Nova. For her own part, May insists she can win. It is May herself who has made the decision to run in Central Nova. Her expressions of optimism are nothing more than anyone should reasoanbly expect.

However, an amusing self-portrait in self-delusion comes from Jim Harris, the man May succeeded as Green Party leader.

In a weblog post on the Green Party website, Harris shares May’s claims that Central Nova is “winnable” for the Green Party. He lists 15 reasons why he believes May running in Central Nova is a “brilliant strategic move”.

First off, Harris claims that the 2003 merger between the Canadian Alliance and Progeressive Conservative party severely hurt McKay’s support within the riding. Comparing the combined CA/PC vote in the 2000 election (55.6%) to the portion of the vote McKay won with in 2004 (49.1%) and his 2006 results (40.7%), Harris draws the conclusion that McKay is “holding onto the seat by the skin of his teeth”.

Secondly, he postulates that “Central Nova is a highly split riding”. While McKay won 40% of the vote in 2006, the closest competitor was the NDP with just under 33% of the ridings’ votes.

Third, Harris notes that the Liberals have agreed not to run a candidate in Central Nova, leaving 25% of the vote up for grabs. Harris describes Central Nova as “the ideal split riding” where any party, theoretically, could win with 25+1% of the vote.

Fourth, Harris notes that May is the only national party leader running in Atlantic Canada. He sites the victory of Alexa McDonough, who won a maritime riding the NDP had never previously won, as historical precedent for such a victory.

As point under five, Harris claims the Green Party is the most efficiently-spending party in Canada. In 2006, the Green Party spent $1.34 for every vote it received in Central Nova. Harris postulates that if the party spends $75,000 in Central Nova, enough voters to defeat McKay will flock to the party.

Point six: Harris notes that St. Francis Xavier University is within the riding. He also notes that in the London North Center bi-election, the Green party also won all the University polls.

Seventh, Harris suggests that being from Nova Scotia gives Elizabeth May home field advantage.

Eight: Harris notes that May and McKay’s contest will be a high-profile race. This, certainly, will be true. Harris notes that the real winner in the contest will be Atlantic Canadians, due to all the attention that the contest will bring to maritme Canadians.

Ninth, Harris insists that the Conservative party has ignored Atlantic Canada.

As his tenth point, Harris insists that “two million Progressive Conservatives” will defect en masse to the Green Party.

Eleventh, Harris insists Central Nova is not being targeted maliciously. The Green party will also be running candidates in Liberal and NDP strongholds.

Point twelve: May running against McKay is “courageous”. Harris suggests voters in Central Nova will admire May’s gutsy moves.

Thirteenth: Harris suggests terror at the prospects of rising ocean levels via climate change will drive voters in Central Nova to the Green Party.

As his fourteenth point, Harris insists that Canadian foreign policy is “horrific”, “from fighting Bush’s war in Afghansistan to undermining the once proud international reputation as peace keepers, to opposing global negotiations on climate change”.

Finally, Harris believes that Harper’s “culture of defeatism” comments will harm McKay in Central Nova.

While it’s a seemingly well-thought-out list, Harris’ analyses falls on its face in several points.

First off, Harris’ math skills are obviously not up to par with the average high school drop-out. Harris insists that the Green party can win in Central Nova because the Liberals won’t be competing against them. However, in 2006, the Liberal party won less than 25% of the vote in this riding. For its part, the Green party captured a less-than-astounding 1.5% of support in the riding. Even if every single Liberal voter casts ballots in favour of the Green party in an upcoming election, this will only be 26.5% of the vote. Should McKay recapture his 2006 total of 40.6%, McKay still wins the riding.

If Liberal voters follow the barely-unspoken command of their increasingly demanding (perhaps, arguably, despotic) leader, it still wouldn’t be enough. However, traditional voting patterns in Atlantic Canada may complicate this assumption. Traditionally, voters in Atlantic Canada are family-oriented. Children tend to vote as their parents voted. The abandonment of the riding by the Liberals could have ramifications for the party akin to a family breakup. The Conservatives could be in for a big ballot box bonus.

Secondly, Harris’ insistence that his party’s ratio of $1.34 will translate into an avalanche of votes is deluded at best. His citation of the influence of St. Francis Xavier university in the riding underscores one important fact – Green Party voters outstrip Green Party donors in the riding. And while the Green Party may have received one vote for every $1.34 spent, they received a grand total of 671 votes.

According to Harris’ math, spending the $75,000 limit in Central Nova should net them 55,970 voters in Central Nova. In 2006, however, only 42,015 voters cast ballots for the Conservatives, Liberals, NDP and Greens, collectively. Harris’ analyses forwards a suggestion that the Green Party will somehow attract more voters than the number that actually live in the riding.

Harris’ insistence that her roots in Nova Scotia will give her an advantage over McKay is laughable. McKay is from Nova Scotia as well, and actually grew up in Central Nova. May grew up in Cape Breton. At best, May can hope for is to match McKay’s appeal in this sense. She probably won’t get even that.

Like May, Harris also cites foreign policy as a portfolio on which they would like to challenge the Conservatives. However, given the recent decimation of their foreign policy credibility by Kevin Potvin, they won’t have much luck in this regard. Consider that one of the “horrors” he accredits to the Conservatives – the war in Afghanistan – was actually initiated by the party they have made a back-room deal with. Oops.

Finally, Harris’ citation of Atlantic alienation operates as a logical fallacy. The constituents of Central Nova should percieve themselves as infinitely better off being represented by a Deputy Prime Minister than by a leader of a fringe party with – if they’re lucky – a handful of seats. Furthermore, May will opposing not only an incumbant MP, but an incumbant MP from an incumbant government with a reasonable governing record. This will be a hard man to dislodge.

On top of all this, McKay’s voting record as Deputy Prime Minister will only solidify his appeal to progressive conservatives in this riding.

In fact, perhaps the best May can hope for in her campaign against Peter McKay is to mount a fierce enough campaign that will attract media attention. The residual media attention that would be afforded to other Green party candidates could be enough to elect a small number of them.

Jim Harris, however, needs to go back to the drawing board and double-check his math.

Monday, April 16, 2007

This Just In: Kevin Potvin Still Doesn't Get It

Potvin clearly not ready for prime time politics

In a world that is constantly changing, it is comforting that some things will never change. Even after his disqualification from candidacy for the Green party, Kevin Potvin’s delusions are apparently one of those things.

In a recent statement, Potvin decried the decision of the Green party executive. "I think the Ottawa headquarters of the Green party misplayed this whole issue,” Potvin mused. “They're not ready for prime-time national politics.”

Fair enough. The Green Party may not be ready for “prime-time national politics.” Then again, neither is Kevin Potvin.

Although it is a well-known political fact that bad press is better than no press – the argument is that a party devoid of media attention will be regarded as irrelevant – the fact is that the amount of negative press heaped on Potvin (and rightfully so) would have made his candidacy a wasted effort. While the Green party may not have any ambitions of government, no fringe party can afford to waste the time, effort, and (most importantly for a small party) money in promoting an unelectable candidate.

Potvin’s most recently-reported musings aren’t the first time that he has engaged in some seemingly-thoughtful self-denial. On his campaign website, Potvin describes himself as a potential “middle of the road” candidate.

While Potvin’s empty anti-Americanism surely would have attracted votes from anti-American ideologues, the mainstream votes necessary for a candidate to win a campaign – especially on a “middle of the road” platform – wouldn’t be able to flee fast enough.

In what can only be described as a confusing logical fallacy, Potvin pointed to his troubles as the cause of the Green party’s other major controversy -- the back room deal between Elizabeth May and Stephane Dion that would prevent either party from running candidates against either leader . "[The National Post editorial] worried the Stephane Dion people enough to the point where they were able to say to Elizabeth May, `Look we took our guy out of a riding for you, you take your guy out of a riding for us,' '' he said.

If anyone can explain how Kevin Potvin’s removal satisfies the agreement in question – given that Dion is running in the riding of Saint-Laurent – Cartierville – or why Kevin Potvin’s 9/11 comments would be a source of worry for Stephan Dion, please let Potvin know. He probably can’t think of any plausible reasons himself.

As evidenced by a Republic column, Potvin also believes himself to be a threat to Industry Minister David Emerson. “The prospect of running against David Emerson had a beauty to it, but also, when I saw who the NDP and Liberals had nominated, I saw a real possibility of winning,” Potvin suggested. “The prospect of being the first Green in the House of Commons, and all the media glare that would come from that, tickled me when I thought about how that much attention could be turned toward environmental and industrial policy reform.”

Potvin clearly paints a very flattering self-image for himself: journalistic icon, environmental visionary, giant of Canadian politics. Unfortunately, none of them really fit.

As the headline reads, Kevin Potvin just doesn’t get it. And while it is very unfortunate that he has received death threats in the wake of the recent publicity of his 9/11 comments, it is very fortunate indeed that he is unsure whether or not he will continue to pursue a political career.

Sunday, April 15, 2007

Update: Elizabeth May DQs Potvin

Just an update on the previous article: Elizabeth May has announced that Kevin Potvin will NOT be a Green Party Candidate in Vancouver-Kingsway.

While her initial "benefit of the doubt" stance remains troublesome, May and the Green Party have clearly made the right decision.

An Inconvenient Truth of Kevin Potvin, Elizabeth May

"Benefit of doubt" for 9/11 celebrator

Kevin Potvin, the Green Party’s recently acclaimed candidate for Vancouver-Kingsway, has attracted controversy recently, via an article, ”A Revolting Confession”. Within the article, Potvin refers to an internal attitude he discovered within himself that found the 9/11 attacks “beautiful”, insisting this was a response that many people shared. “Nor was I alone, I know for a fact,” he insists, “whenever I passed a TV or newspaper with a report on the ensuing US war to capture Osama bin Laden, and I secretly said to myself, "Go, Osama, Go!" I am happy he has eluded capture by the Americans. I am in love with those Afghans who, whenever asked, said, "He went that-a-way," and their fifty hands pointed in fifty different directions.”

Potvin has weakly tried to dismiss the article as symbolic. Yet one finds it hard to find the symbolism in rooting for Osama bin Laden. A response published in The Republic, however, is much more telling.

While attempting to invoke Keats, Potvin notes that, on the afternoon of 9/11, “I went home and got out my pad of paper and made notes of everything that I could detect I was feeling. This is one of my journalistic techniques, it’s a form of shorthand. Rather than make notes of speeches at press conferences and other events, I instead pay attention and focus on the speaker, and then afterward make notes of exactly how I feel. Later, when I need to write up the story, I refer to my notes, and by being reminded of my feelings at the time, I remember everything that was said, and what’s more, I retain the meaning.”

In short, Potvin, the “journalist”, doesn’t take any notes or make any records of statements or events. He notes his emotional response, then uses that to remember what happened, or what was said. He also uses this to reconstruct the meaning.

Reconstruct is actually a very appropriate term. The science of psychology tells us that human memory is reconstructive. As such, using emotion as a recognitive tool in the place of any sort of record about what was actually said is a recipe for journalistic disaster. It’s entirely unlikely that mr. Potvin remembers anything as it was said, or as it actually happened. Whether this journalistic technique is an actual form of mental shorthand – as he insists – or if it is simply an excuse to promote his bias within his writing only mr. Potvin will really know for certain.

There are deeper issues here, however, than simply those for Potvin and his publication. There are very deep issues at play for the Green Party itself.

In a blog entry on the Green party website, Elizabeth May reveals that she chose the riding of Central Nova so she could challenge Peter MacKay on the foreign policy portfolio. “By running in Central Nova I will be taking on the Minister of Foreign Affairs, raising the clarity of vision of our international policies versus the “aye, aye, Sir” approach of Mr. Harper,” May insists.

Meanwhile, the Green party website has begun to feature more examples of foreign policy, ranging from the predictable pro-Kyoto stance to “be nice to Iran”.

More so than anything, the Kevin Potvin affair could prove to be the latest in a series of events demonstrating Elizabeth May’s unsuitability as a political leader. As with her recent kowtowing to Stephan Dion ., May risks demonstrating that she cannot ascertain the gravity of her decisions. Even while she sends a crystal-clear message to her party membership that her party will not campaign for a mandate to govern (thus accepting perpetual fringe party status), May has excused Potvin at a time when she wants to run against Peter McKay in Central Nova on the issue of foreign affairs.

A leader who undermines his or her own credibility has no real future in politics – and for obvious reasons. Potvin himself falls prey to this, but mostly through what can only be described as his own hypocrisy.

The masthead for his Republic newspaper reads, “The Republic of East Vancouver supports no party, advocates for no cause, serves no master, and considers problems with no preconceived notions”. Potvin would be able to reconcile this position against his Green Party candidacy if it weren’t for the fact that Potvin has used his publication to vigorously promote his own candidacy. There isn’t necessarily anything wrong this this, but it does break his promise of non-partisanship to his readers.

Furthermore, Potvin’s celebration of 9/11 as an attack on capitalism comes off as disingenuous coming from someone who, as a small business owner, is effectively a capitalist himself.

Furthermore (but not necessarily finally), he dismissed criticism over his comments by saying, “Don't you think the Parliament of Canada requires people that are free thinkers, independent thinkers and people that bring other points of view to the table besides those that are commonly accepted and those that are credentialed by the newspaper columnists?" In short, Potvin, himself a newspaper columnist – if one considers publications such as the Republic to be newspapers – argues that he is a maverick because his views aren’t supported by newspaper columnists. It smacks of an attempt at double-sided populism, and not a very good attempt at that.

Ironically, Preston Manning and the Reform party provided a good demonstration of how to deal with a controversial candidate, also in a Vancouver riding. When Doug Collins, a Vancouver-area radio host who had expressed racially-charged sentiments refused to distance himself from such comments, Manning himself refused to sign Collins’ candidacy. The Collins affair was still used to paint the party as racist, but one can only imagine how much worse this could have been had Collins not been dealt with appropriately.

There is another lesson that the Green party desperately needs to learn from the Reform party – that of not accepting fringe party status. The Reform party always declared its intention to eventually form the government, and as such was able to engineer a fairly meteoric rise to go from having no seats in parliament to being the Official Opposition in only nine years. Having already existed for more than 20 years in Canada, the Green party, particularly under May’s leadership, seems content to accept fringe party status.

This is not the kind of leadership this party needs.