Wednesday, July 15, 2015

The Mound of Sound Loses It

It's tragic really. But all his idle hours in retirement, studying up the grave dangers of anthropogenic global warming has unhinged "The Mound of Sound" aka "the Disaffected Lib" aka "Johnny - 'six gun' DiCosmo" aka "Juan Pacifico Ramirez" 's brain.

(Actually, it's in poor taste to say he's become unhinged. Just as it's in poor taste for MoS to say that I've become an unhinged NDP-Thomas Mulcair groupee/partisan hack/deluded follower. Which he did. Which was in poor taste.)

The MoS has gotten it into his pretty white head that the ONLY moral vote is a vote for the Green Party of Canada. In this, the MoS has elevated himself to stephen harper's number one ally for the next election. Thanks to "unhinged" Green Party hacks like the MoS, the progressive vote, instead of the customary two-way split, betwixt Liberal and NDP, looks set to be divided by a hard slog between the NDP, the Liberals, the Greens and, in Quebec, the Bloc Quebecois.

Congratulations MoS on your efforts to finally plunge the stake into the heart of what passed for democracy in this country. Perhaps you'll be rewarded by the harpercon beneficiaries of your stupidity. But don't count on it. The "idiot" in the term "useful idiot" is not exactly a term of endearment.

(Actually, that's not fair of me, to condemn MoS for the likely outcome of his voting choices and his electoral advice. Just as it's unfair [and stupid] of MoS to engage in the Liberal Party canard that Jack Layton and the NDP are responsible for getting stephen harper his first electoral victory. But I assume that "Disaffected Lib" means "former, now disaffected Liberal Party supporter." And you can take the boy out of the Liberal Party, but you can't take the Liberal Party out of the boy. Jack Layton was right to pull the plug on the government of the vile Paul Martin. And Martin and the Liberals did not fight that election chained up inside a wooden crate by Jack Layton. They campaigned and they lost, due to their corruption and, more importantly, their dismal record of austerity and neo-liberal cruelty. Fuck them.)

The fact of the matter is, though, that I don't begrudge MoS for wanting to vote Green. And I don't begrudge him advising other people to vote Green. Evidently they have the best party platform on the environment, and, especially, on meeting the challenge of global warming. (Although, as a former Liberal, I'm surprised that MoS has such a touching faith in a party's platform!)

No, what I object to, what I find (at best) as tiresomely pompous or (at worst) outright offensive, is MoS's frenzied belief that anyone who doesn't vote Green isn't progressive, but is, rather, the moral equivalent of a 19th-Century supporter of slavery. Anyone who doesn't vote Green is willfully condemning future generations (including their own children, and including MoS's precious grandchildren) to lives of misery and upheaval and the doom of civilization.

Put another way; the Green Party of Canada stands at around 5% in the polls. It is MoS's contention that anyone who doesn't believe that support for the Greens will increase its support ten times by October and votes for someone else to defeat the harpercon candidate in their riding, is a monster. A criminal. An inhuman, selfish, immoral, blind, stupid, evil person. You must close your eyes, click your ruby slippers together and BELIEVE that the Greens will increase their support by enough to obliterate the Liberals and the NDP (and the BQ) everywhere, so that there's no contest except that between the Green candidate and the harpercon candidate, with the Green candidate coming out victorious.

You can try to reason with the man that this seems highly unlikely. You can try to explain how the harpercons (as he should remember) are shameless, complete tools of the oil industry who don't even make a pretence of listening to other views, including the results of sound science. You can attempt to argue that there is a danger of vote-splitting giving harper another majority and thereby allowing him to stomp on the corpse of Canadian parliamentary democracy for another five years. Thereby allowing him to continue to go hog-wild on tar sands development for another five years.

(This last point has been dismissed by MoS by the fact that all the other parties except for the Greens are comprised of "petro-politicians" who will continue investing in the Tar Sands. MoS has no time for "lesser evilism." Except for the fact that both the Liberals and the NDP actually admit there's such a thing as global warming; and that one or the other of them has advocated for carbon taxes or a cap-and-trade regime, and conservation and whatever. That might be "lesser-evil" stuff, but that's also secondary to the fact that both of those parties can be guaranteed to at least LISTEN to reason. Even the Liberals have more respect for pubic opinion and the rules of the parliamentary system than do the harpercons. Considering the reality of harpercon delusion, intransigence and anti-democratic thuggery, I don't think those are negligible points.)

But what am I doing? Here I am, talking about weighing the benefits of voting one's conscience, advocating a certain political party, and the risks of unintentionally benefiting the harpercons, ("blathering" about vote-splitting and strategic voting as MoS puts it) as if MoS is a reasonable chap with whom I have a friendly disagreement. But MoS isn't reasonable, and, by his decision, this is not friendly. I am an enemy of humanity because I plan to support the NDP in Toronto while voting Liberal (a nice, progressive United Church minister candidate) in my riding. To get rid of harpercons and to elect politicians from parties that might actually (at least) pretend to listen and which will (definitely) do at least something to mitigate global warming.

I've said again and again that I respect the choice to vote one's conscience. Lindsay Stewart (aka "Pretty Shaved Ape" at Canadian Cynic's blog) always argued passionately that strategic voting was defeatist and demoralizing. Personally, I always thought it was simple reality. If you have a decision between monstrous and scuzzy, vote scuzzy. I was always privileged to live in ridings where the NDP was viable and so I voted NDP. If I lived in some part of the country that was only a two-way race between the Liberals and the Conservatives, I'd vote Liberal. Like I plan to do in October. In other words, I RESPECTFULLY disagree.

And it's simple fucking math. If a sane Liberal candidate lost against a harpercon monster by 500 votes last time, and 3,000 votes went to the Greens and the NDP, and at least half of those people would, if given the stark choice, have settled for the Liberal as opposed to the sexist, racist, war-monger, homophobic harpercon, then strategic voting would have defeated the harpercon. Just as if the NDP lost a riding by 500 votes last time and 2,000 votes went to some corporate Liberal shill, ... vote NDP next time, you anti-harpercons in that riding.

And it's simple fucking reality. A party that stands at 5% in the polls in July is most likely not going to rise to 50% in the polls by October. But you know what? You can believe such asinine fantasies if you want. I won't call you a selfish, deluded, anti-democratic thug, enemy of humanity scumbag.

That's just how I roll.

I'll miss taking MoS seriously. Perhaps I'll visit his blog now and again. He writes well on other topics. But with his Green Party fanaticism, he's like "Scotian." I see the words "I was condemned as a Cassandra when I predicted ... blah, blah, blah, ... the danger of the IMF becoming .... blah, blah, blah, ...." atop of three long paragraphs with the word "dipper" scattered about. I don't read those screeds anymore.

In MoS''s eyes, this is obviously because I've developed a fetish for the salt and pepper beard of Angry Tom. My years of complaining about Mulcair's support for Zionist imperialism and his depressing transformation of the NDP to occupy the space  of the doomed Liberal Party don't matter. (btw MoS? "Angry Tom has a beard" is a really stupid argument, one that I normally wouldn't associate with a person of your intellect.)

On this topic, MoS fluctuates between being a figure of fun, to an object of pity, then an object of scorn.


Northern PoV said...

I always liked MoS posts - but ya lately he seems to have gone off the deep end in regards to Oct. 19.

I asked him in to show me a political party - anywhere in the world - that is currently in power, or has a reasonable expectation of gaining power, that lives up to his standard. Got a snide response, alas.

Today, only ex-Pols will call it like it is. We have a climate disaster on the way regardless of our near future efforts to curb carbon pollution.
We need to restore the democratic process in Canada and restore a science-based gov't. The question is not about preventing the coming deluge, it is more about our response to that:
A civilized collectivist response or
A mad-max capitalist nightmare

Voting Green (outside SGI) in 2015 is playing the long game when we are in sudden death overtime.

thwap said...


Of course, we're also advocating playing the long-game. Stage 1: Get rid of the immediate threat to even the possibility of a democratic response to global warming, Stage 2: Implement proportional representation, Stage 3: Push the sane parties to get serious about the coming disaster.

MoS appears to think that somehow, all of this can be avoided by simply voting Green, because of their excellent platform and the moral imperative (as he sees it). But building a party is hard work, as long-term as anything else.

He might dismiss talk of the polling numbers as "blathering," but it remains the case that people following his advice could deliver harper another majority.

Happily, his ability to impact voters' decisions is almost as negligible as mine. It's really the tone of his writings on this subject that I find personally offensive.

zoombats said...

At least in the past, a protest vote for the Greens would give them a dollar for their funding. Even that has been taken away by The Ass.

thwap said...


Yeah. Which makes voting for your ideals even more pointless in those godforsaken areas where a cromagnon harpercon dukes it out with a corporate shill Liberal.

Anonymous said...

Quite reasonable.
I'll be voting for whomever has the best chance
of flipping this Con riding.

Anonymous said...

Actually, thwap, the other day I wrote that I'd be voting LPOC because they pledged to fund FN education equal to ours. And because millionares should not be receiving welfare cheques as part of a vote-buying scheme, which the NDP will continue.
So, I guess I'll know that day. The Cons need gone.

thwap said...


Continue to do what you will in your riding, but for the record, I have no problem with giving millionaires cheques, so long as they're taxed-back. (But the child benefit tax credit that counts as income thing is not what I'm talking about.)

Linda McQuaig explains it in The Wealthy Banker's Wife: it's the principle of universality.

Basically, it is easier to pay out to everyone and receive repayment from those so rich they don't need the money by accounting for the benefits they receive at tax time than it is to have a bureaucracy in place to conduct means tests and invent cut-off lines for benefits.

At the same time, the fact that everyone gets the benefits ("universal") means that everyone has a shared sense of the rights of individuals to these benefits.