Friday, August 6, 2010

EKOS Poll: 4.8-pt Conservative Lead (down one)

Back from vacation, and it seems like not much has happened in the last week. There was, of course, the new EKOS poll yesterday. You'll find below the results of polling over the last two weeks, but a look at each individual week of polling would be a good idea as well.Compared to EKOS's last two week poll, the Conservatives are down 0.6 points to 31.6%. The Liberals are up 0.4 to 26.8%, while the New Democrats are up 0.9 points to 17.3%.

The Bloc Québécois is up 0.3 to 10.4% and the Greens are down 0.9 to 11.0%.

It gets a little dicier when we look at the last week of polling. From the first week to the second week the Conservatives dropped 3.5 points to 29.7% - a very bad number for them. The Liberals were the ones who took advantage, as they gained 3.3 points to 28.5%. The other parties were relatively stable.

Did anything happen to cause such a drop-off in Conservative support, or is this a product of the margin of error?

While we can only speculate now, the answer will probably come in two more weeks when we get EKOS's next poll.

Numbers-wise, the Conservative drop came throughout the country. The party lost a lot of support among males, all of it going to the Liberals. They dropped more than 10 points in British Columbia and the Prairies, eight points in Alberta, seven in Atlantic Canada, four in Quebec, and two in Ontario from the first week of polling to the next. The Liberal gains came in the West (five in BC, 4 in Alberta, and one in the Prairies) but also in Atlantic Canada (five points) and especially Quebec (10 points). Such a wide variation is more likely due to the MOE, but we'll have to wait and see to be sure.

As to the two weeks of polling, the Conservatives lead in Ontario with 33.0%, down two from the last two weeks of polling. The Liberals are down one to 31.9% and the NDP is up three to 18.6%, a good number for them. The Liberals lead in Toronto with 39.8%, followed by the Conservatives at 30.4%. The Tories lead in Ottawa with 43.8% to the Liberals' 30.7%.

The Bloc is well ahead in Quebec, up one point to 40.7%. The Liberals are up one to 22.8% and the Conservatives are down one to 15.4%. The NDP is also down one to 9.9%. The Bloc leads in Montreal with 39.4%, followed by the Liberals at 25.6%.

The Conservatives are up six points in British Columbia and lead with 36.3%. The NDP follows with 28.1%, down one. The Liberals are down two to 21.9% and the Greens are down two to 11.3%. The Tories are ahead in Vancouver with 40.6%, followed by the NDP at 23.9%.

The Liberals lead in Atlantic Canada with 37.1% while the Conservatives are ahead in Alberta (52.1%) and the Prairies (47.9%). There has not been much change in any of these regions.

The Conservatives win 68 seats in the West and North, 42 in Ontario, 6 in Quebec, and 9 in Atlantic Canada for a total of 125.

The Liberals win 14 seats in the West and North, 44 in Ontario, 15 in Quebec, and 20 in Atlantic Canada for a total of 93.

The Bloc wins 54 seats in Quebec.

The NDP wins 13 seats in the West, 20 in Ontario, and 3 in Atlantic Canada for a total of 36.

A combination of NDP and Liberal seats would give them 129, barely more than the Tories.

As to those two individual weeks of polling, the Conservatives would win a solid minority with 131 seats in the first week of polling. The Liberals would win 88 and the NDP 35, with the Bloc taking 54 in Quebec.But in the more recent week of polling, the situation is very different. The Conservatives are reduced to only 113 seats while the Liberals win 99 and the NDP 42. That would give them 141 seats, much more than the Tories. The Bloc would win 53 seats and the Greens would win one in Ontario.

Obviously, that is a very different result.

But it's the beginning of August. Things will change by the time September rolls around and we start thinking about the next session of Parliament. And, of course, this last week of EKOS polling could be an outlier, and things will look less bleak in the next EKOS poll or polls from Ipsos-Reid, Harris-Decima, or Angus-Reid.

Nevertheless, it is fun to see something a little different after months of nothing-much-to-see-here.

73 comments:

  1. Its kind of funny to watch.

    A month or so ago the headlines were all about the fact that Ignatieff had brought the Liberals to their lowest support in like 20 years.

    Now the headlines are all about the fact that Harper has brought the Conservatives to their lowest support since 2006.


    Lesson = Polls go up and down.

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  2. It's odd to that using the blended weeks gives a result better for the CPC than the recent HD poll.

    Have we got enough data for trend lines yet Eric?

    113 to 141 would indeed be a shocker.

    I see Harper has shuffled the deck chairs on the Titanic again.

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  3. Its kind of funny to watch.

    A month or so ago the headlines were all about the fact that Michael Ignatieff, and the liberal party were completely finished, and Stephen Harper, was king and headed for a massive majority.

    A month or so ago the headlines were all about what a master tactician Stephen Harper was.

    Stephen Harper, is a master tactician alright. He has a very great talent for shooting himself in the foot over, and over, and over again.

    It seem that Stephen Harper, is now at Stockwell Day, levels of support.

    Lesson= Never write off the LPC, and the Harper slide is on.

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  4. Very much a case of wait and see what the next few polls show. Great to have something different though.

    Sub 30% for both major parties in week #2? NDP & Green support in that week as high as the Liberals and almost as high as the CPC? Shows just how unhappy the average voter is right now with the big 2.

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  5. 49:
    Lesson= Never write off the LPC, and the Harper slide is on.

    Have to agree. Now the interesting thing is essentially for the last month the Liberals have been off the radar so this is entirely a Harper created situation.

    You agree ?

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  6. It will be interesting to see a couple of more polls to see if this is a trend. I'm under that impression that governing parties usually poll better when the house is not sitting. It looks to me like Harper is starting to wear on people.

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  7. 49 steps that's a bit rich isn't it ?

    You're setting yourself up for dissapointment if a holiday weekend, higher than usual MOE, reduced sample size second week EKOS is all you've got to hang your hat on.

    As John Northley said, wait and see.

    A single poll isn't the start of anything, let alone the "Harper slide".

    3 data points are required for conclusive evidence of any movement.


    For now it seems Harper is above Stockwell Day's level of support (outside the MOE of Day's election result) and Ignatieff remains stuck at Dion levels of support (withing the MOE of Dion's 2008 result).



    BTW - How has Harper shot himself in the foot ?

    He keeps getting everything he wants with nobody to stop him.

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  8. "He keeps getting everything he wants with nobody to stop him."

    He wants a majority so he can bring in a neo-con reign of terror so extreme that we can barely imagine it. He's not getting it because Canadians don't trust him with that much power.

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  9. Ignatieff doesn't seem to be flopping around as much as he used to, starting to get some respect from the press (rightly or wrongly). Harper has been very invisible (very odd) all summer. Hrm.

    Given the issues being put into the media - from the census to prison costs to new jets for the military, all low issues on the priority scale for average Canadians - one wonders what is going on. I wonder if Harper is trying to set it up so the opposition is focused on 'non-issues' for Joe Public then can jump into an election over something people care about (the economy). Claim the opposition is out of touch and has no idea on what to do about the economy, that they are focused on secondary issues and use that to climb up in the polls during the campaign and get that majority.

    Crime is an issue to those near the big cities (suburbs tend to be paranoid about it) and that is a key area for him. Most of Quebec is a write off. Thus the 905/519 areas of Ontario and the areas surrounding Vancouver out west are key. Expect his campaign to focus on the 30-50 year olds who have kids and tend to alternate Liberal/Conservative, while counting on GOTV for seniors. This is good for me as I land in that 30-50 range and have kids, but I wonder how good it would be for Canada. Hrm.

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  10. John I don't think there's anything odd about Harper going on a summer vacation.

    He's been on extensive overseas trips, hosted the olympics, hosted the Queen, and hosted the G8/G20.

    Some R&R with the family will be helpful in the fall. The public hates a leader who looks tired.


    The problem for Ignatieff is that last year by the end of the fall session he was very, very worn out.

    If he takes no break during the summer then he'll run out of gas midway through the fall.

    BTW - Harper has ruled out a fall election.

    He said yesterday that the coalition was pushing an election and he said today that the economy was too fragile for an election.

    Next window for an election will be AFTER Alberta, Ontario municipal and NB provincial.

    Sometime in november or december is possible.

    He may wish to do an election that runs over the Christmas break even.

    Having his family with him to celebrate Christmas is very blue sweater. And its a big contrast with Ignatieff who's not seen as a family man.

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  11. Shadow,

    See you at the polls...this fall!

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  12. I think the opposition should put forth a motion of non-confidence in the governments handling of the census and then if Harper really thinks the economy is "too fragile" to withstand an election - all he has to do is admit he goofed on the census and restore it to the way it was.

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  13. Traditionally we don't hold elections in the winter, but the last one we did hold in the winter went very well for Stephen Harper.

    Calling an election also prorogues parliament. That would make it three straight winters of proroguation.

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  14. The problem for Stephen Harper, is he is just worn out, and obviously has a problem with his weight.

    The stress of being Prime Minister, is starting to take a toll on him, as he was never really up to the job, and he looks just terrible. There is enough guy liner, and mascara, to cover up those tired and puffy dead looking eyes.

    I mean he is running the largest deficit in Canadian history, and he has two cabinet ministers who have made absolute fools of themselves this week. Tony Clement, and Stockwell Day.

    You see Harper, wants st spend upwards to $10 billion on new super prisons, even though Statistics Canada has said that crime rates are falling.

    OOPS, mustn't mention Statistics Canada, as they contradict all of Harper's baloney.

    Anyway, Stockwell Day, wants to spend billions on new prisons because of all this unreported crime we have. I guess these new prisons will be full of all these non existent criminals, who are committing all this unreported crime.

    Tony "Shamwow" Clement wants to make the long form census voluntary, and thereby make the data and the information less reliable but somehow spend $30 million more to do it.

    The $16 billion on new fighter jets is another shrewd and brilliant move, for this fiscally conservative government.

    Harper, is also increasing his office budget by $1.7 million all the while telling Canadians, that we will have to tighten our belts.

    And I mean that jobs report today can't be good news for Harper. What was it now 139,000 full time jobs lost??

    Funny I didn't see Harper, rushing out to claim credit for that, like he does everything else.

    Is it any wonder the man doesn't want an election??

    That will not be up to him anyway, if the three opposition parties decide to vote non confidence in his government.

    I guess if push comes to shove he could always crawl across the street to Rideau Hall, to see the GG, and ask for a prorogation again.

    I mean he has already pulled off that stunt once before, as no Canadian Prime Minister was ever granted prorogation before to stave off defeat on a non confidence motion.

    Francophone, and Acadian groups, are challenging the census plans of the Harper, government with a lawsuit, which I guess will do wonders for Steve in Quebec.

    And if the rumours are true, Harper has more problems than imagined.

    Of course he is a family values, moral, sanctimonious, Conservative, and it is only the Conservatives who have morals, and principles, you can just ask Vic Toews about those Conservative family values.

    Yes our boy Stephen Harper, is just in fantastic shape.

    He keeps repeating his mantra that Canadians do not want an election.

    Funny in 2008, he broke his own fixed election law, to call an election because he believed that he could garner a majority.

    A few years ago Harper, was always threatening the opposition with an election if they did not acquiesce to his demands.

    Now he has the audacity to tell us that we do not want an election.

    Hell, the only ones who do not want an election are the Conservatives.

    And with damn good reason too.

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  15. Shadow,

    Yes, because calling an election over Christmas will make him look a like a family man. Just like it did for Paul Martin.

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  16. 49 Steps,

    Our most important job: to square away Jack. Gilles won't be a problem -- as he candidly admits.

    The stars are starting to align. Let's give them just a little help, shall we?

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  17. Volkov the timing of the 2006 election was hardly Paul Martin's fault.

    It was the NDP who pulled the plug on that situation.

    Baird can easily find a way to manipulate the calender. Have the opposition vote down the gov't and blame the election on them.

    Making the opposition "wear" an unpopular election seems to be Harper's latest messaging.


    And yes, holidays do tend to help Harper. His polls went up over Xmas and Thanksgiving the previous two elections.

    I don't remeber much about Paul Martin's family to tell you the truth. Weren't his kids grown up?

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  18. I would also be remiss not to mention that Canadians, before they turn in every night should check under their bed for Russians.

    According to our illustrious defense minister Peter McKay the "Russkies" are coming for us.

    You see Peter McKay likes to make a big flap every year about how our CF-18s are keeping the Russians from invading Canada.

    About a week ago he was at it again claiming that the Canadian Air force was keeping the Russians from invading Canadian air space.

    He climbed aboard a CF-18 to laud our air force and play little boy soldier.

    He of course used this incident as a justification for the untendered $!6 billion single engine fighter jet purchase he intends to make.

    Of course it is also not the first time our "Chicken Hawk" McKay has made a similar claim.

    He was at it in 2009, when President Obama, was visiting Canada, and claimed the Russians were trying to invade Canada.

    N ow lets see, we can thank Peter McKay, and the Harper, government for repelling a Russian invasion in 2009, and 2010.

    The only problem is that Peter McKay, has a record of having a problem with the truth, and we can just ask David Orchard about that.

    Now I don't know about anybody else, but I just go to bed every night fearful that when I wake up the Russians, will have invaded Canada, and we will all be forced to drink vodka and eat caviar for breakfast.

    Thank Gawd, for Peter McKay, and Stephen Harper, our two resident "chicken hawks" in office in Ottawa.

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  19. 49 steps your grasp on geopolitics is weak.

    Its an accepted fact that the Russian's are actively infringing on Canadian sovereignty by not accepting the full extent of our Arctic claims.

    Sovereignty is use it or lose it. Projection of power with new aircraft will be essential to keeping that territory.


    But hey, if you don't want to join the Harper government in standing up for Canada that's fine too.

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  20. 49:
    Thank Gawd, for Peter McKay,

    Yet less than two weeks after the "intercept" we do a Joint exercise with the Russians in the Arctic.

    So maybe the "intercept" was just a preliminary test of the C & C functions?? After all two different languages at play and different command structures it would make sense to do a test, eh?

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  21. It's never so black and white.

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  22. Peter there is no contradiction between a territorial dispute and a military exercise to prepare for terrorism (a joint threat to all 3 nations).

    The US, Norway, Sweden, and Denmark don't fully recognize our territorial claims either yet we remains in a military alliance with them.


    I know the media played the two events against each other as a "gotcha" (like their horrible reporting on yesterday's jobs report).

    But really they are seperate incidents that were unrelated.

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  23. Shadow,

    "Its an accepted fact that the Russian's are actively infringing on Canadian sovereignty by not accepting the full extent of our Arctic claims.

    Sovereignty is use it or lose it. Projection of power with new aircraft will be essential to keeping that territory."

    So true -- and neither are our other mortal enemies: the United States, Denmark, to name but a few. Good thing Lawrence has the situation well in hand! Who needs "one-seater" fighter patrols.

    And besides, our sovereignty will be decided on the basis of the continental shelf. You know that as well as anyone.

    Nice try, though.

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  24. But really they are seperate incidents that were unrelated.

    For which you have NO evidence.

    Second we have had and continue to have excellent relations with Russia. One doesn't jeopardize that by slipshod military operations.

    Third Russia supports our claim that the NWP is territorial waters, something that the USA rejects. Speaking of terrorism how about nuke subs going through our waters with NO clearance from us.

    Let's face facts, the CPC (Mackay) grabbed a scheduled incident and spun it for political purposes. All parties do this as we know. CPC is NO different.

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  25. Ron:
    And besides, our sovereignty will be decided on the basis of the continental shelf.

    Yes we do but Shadow never lets facts get in the way of political spin as we all know.

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  26. Shadow I think it is you who is out of touch with reality. The census is self inflicted damage, just as prorogation was. It now looks like Helena should at the very least be readmitted to caucus. Failure to do will like cost us her seat.

    While Day will likely retain his seat, Clement has been shown to be an idiot and the voters in his riding may want a change.

    Harper has had an awful summer, following an awful winter and spring. The only thing keeping him in power is the weakness of the Liberals and Iggy.

    Harper may be suffering the death of a thousand cuts. None of these scandals and "crisis" are enough on its own to raise real questions of competence. Taken together though they begin to wear upon the electorate.

    September will tell. I don't see the Liberals pulling the plug unless they take the lead by four or five points or the economy deteriorates. The BLOC and NDP seem ready to go. Perhaps the opposition will wait for the budget in the spring and its cuts to bring Harper down. Unless he finds a way to remind Canadians of his competence, he is trouble. Remember governments most often defeat themselves. Harper is on his way to doing just that.

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  27. Looking at the Ekos data from the CBC link you can se that the CPC trend line is downwards.

    From a high in Oct 09 there has been a steady but not precipitous drop. Allowing for the usual poll to poll jitter it's quite steady.

    can't get the thing off Ekos bloody .pdf !! Grrr

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  28. Ron you didn't read my second comment.

    Denmark has actually invaded Canada. An actual land invasion. (According to the Liberal government at the time).

    And yet we're still in a military alliance with them. Strange indeed.

    But I do seem to remember at the time that we did some flag planting of our own.

    Russia tried dropping a capsule beneath the Arctic circle.

    We just located an ancient British vessel in the frozen north.


    If you really think a UN panel is the be all and end all of sovereignty then you're being naive.

    The way things are heating up with China's string of pearls and agressive claims against Vietnam for control of "islands" they might not even be a signatory to any international laws of the sea in 10-15 years.

    Raw power determines borders. Military, economic, cultural, scientific, etc power. Not some squishy UN panel.

    Ask the Palestinians and the Georgians what they'd rather, the UN on their side or a really powerful army.

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  29. Where are the votes?

    http://www.nationalpost.com/todays-paper/Prohibition/3371491/story.html

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  30. Earl you fret too much.

    For three elections in a row now Harper has increased the CPC seat count.

    If and when that ceases to be i'll start listening to the naysayers.

    This could have been you prior to the last election:

    The changes to the income trusts and the Cadman situation and Rona Ambrose's bungling of the environment file have doomed the Harper gov't !!

    They're all self inflicted wounds !!

    Look Dion is ahead by 10 points in the polls !

    (We all know how that turned out. So much for media invented "gotcha" stories and death by a thousand cuts.)

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  31. Terence Corcoran shakes his libertarian head in saddness at the ineptitude of this governments crime agenda.

    Earls on the money with the death of a thousand cuts theory. How many blue voters will sit on their hands next election? I'm guessing it will be significant.

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  32. Shadow,

    I couldn't read your post as Éric had not yet posted it when I wrote my post.

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  33. Earl,

    "September will tell. I don't see the Liberals pulling the plug unless they take the lead by four or five points or the economy deteriorates. The BLOC and NDP seem ready to go. Perhaps the opposition will wait for the budget in the spring and its cuts to bring Harper down. Unless he finds a way to remind Canadians of his competence, he is trouble. Remember governments most often defeat themselves. Harper is on his way to doing just that."

    What do you think of this Earl? The OLO (like the PMO before it) does not give two shits about what I think. (It will take much more than THAT to make me humble, but I digress!!!)

    If you are to offer yourself and your party as an alternative government, you have to project an image of steely determination along the lines of the much ridiculed "Mr. Harper, your time is up!" That was one hell of a good start. Too bad the NDP lost its nerve.

    In any event, the opposition parties can't afford to delay. IMHO, that will be telegraphed to the voters as W-E-A-K-N-E-S-S.

    It's now or never -- to wait until the spring allows this government potentially to recover its footing while saying five years after the first Conservative win that Liberals (with the joint help of the other two parties) are still not ready to do what it takes to return to power.

    To delay is to put in place conditions for another poll dip -- and I don't mean for the Harper government.

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  34. Shadow,

    "Denmark has actually invaded Canada. An actual land invasion. (According to the Liberal government at the time).

    And yet we're still in a military alliance with them. Strange indeed."

    You're politically sophisticated enough that I don't have to give you a course in public relations...my vague recollection is that the Danes landed on an island which we both claim and raised their flag. We did the same later with the Rangers (and perhaps CF personnel).

    That stunt was merely for domestic PR consumption. It was nothing more than hollow symbolism.

    To my mind, you are half right: it is indeed use it or lose it -- but not in the way you think. You need to establish a permanent physical presence as a way of confirming your sovereignty. That can't be done by a flyover or a ship.

    "The way things are heating up with China's string of pearls and agressive claims against Vietnam for control of "islands" they might not even be a signatory to any international laws of the sea in 10-15 years.

    Raw power determines borders. Military, economic, cultural, scientific, etc power. Not some squishy UN panel.

    Ask the Palestinians and the Georgians what they'd rather, the UN on their side or a really powerful army."

    Perhaps. But it one thing to go to war against an underwhelmed enemy that is not in a military alliance. No one will ever attack the sovereign or claimed territory of a NATO member. That's just not on.

    As for the Palestinians: their's is not a dispute that can be resolved militarily (quite obviously) but rather can only be settled with a two-state solution.

    As for the Georgians -- Saakashvili blew that one big time. He expected to be backed up by the U.S. He was sadly mistaken -- you don't risk WWIII over two secessionist republics (Abkhazia and South Ossetia)where Russian is the preferred language of citizens. Surprise, surprise, that Russia is still in control there. It is a reflection of the political mentality of most people in those two republics, or so it seems from here.

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  35. AJR79 that article by Terence Corcoran didn't sound libertarian to me, it sound completely paranoid.

    Anti-gang powers are introduced and the first thing he jumps to is the average joe being charged by over zealous police.

    And then he paints prostitution and drugs as harmless activities that are compatible with a mature society.


    Really ? The distribution of crystal meth is harmless ?

    Really ? Human trafficking from Africa and Eastern Europe is harmless ?

    How about we wait and see if anti-gang powers are used for fighting gangs or regular people ok ?

    Instead of getting all black helicopter right off the bat.

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  36. Hey Shadow,

    I don't think it's a coincedence that Earl and I are both gloomy about CPC prospects, and both posted the same article (out of hundreds) as a major reason why.

    Terence is not paranoid to think that the police will abuse these powers, there is a very good chance that that will happen. Libertarian thinking doesn't posit that you give the state (police) extra powers, and then wait to see if they abuse them.

    I agree that crystal meth is nasty stuff, and those that make it should be dealt with. Now how will cracking down on pot offenders help?

    In my mind even hard drug use is a health issue, not a criminal one. If crystal meth were legal tommorrow, how many extra people would rush out and try it?

    As for prostitution... it is a victimless crime. Human trafficing is not a victimless crime, and should be prosecuted to the fullest extent.

    You may also notice that we don't determine the legality of things based on their level of harm.

    Alcohol is leagl even when it is more harmful, by any concievable metric, then marijuana.

    Take a look at the reasons we ended alcohol prohibition, and then apply them directly to marijuana, and prostitution.
    They are the same reasons. When will we learn?

    Throwing the guy with 6 pot plants in jail for a minimum of six months? Does that not strike you as counter-productive.

    This crime agenda should be a concern to every libertarian-type thinker.

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  37. And Guergis should be let back into caucus immediately. It's pretty obvious that she was wronged.

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  38. Something has really been weighing on my mind about this census issue.

    Tony Clement claims that he wants to make the long form census voluntary, because it is too intrusive and he does not like the fact that if a person does not fill it out as required by law, then a penalty of jail time, and or fine will apply. Even though no Canadian, has ever gone to jail for not filling out their mandatory long form census.

    And yet the short form census, will still be mandatory, and the threat of a fine and or jail time will still apply.

    Now doesn't this seem in congruent, and I notice Tony Clement, cannot seem to provide a coherent argument for this either. No surprise there.

    And I also notice that the agricultural census, is not being touched at all.

    Now why is this??

    Could it be that Harper, and company have made this move on the census based on ideology and not sound policy, and they dare not tick off farmers, which constitutes some of that much vaunted base of the CPC??

    This tough on crime mantra of Harper, also seems a little strange.

    Harper, wants to close down the prison farms, even though experts have lauded this as an excellent rehabilitation program, and good for the inmates who partake in it. It provides inmates with a marketable skill that they can put to good use, when they are released from prison, and rejoin society as productive tax paying, law abiding citizens.

    This is being done to save $4 million a year. Harper, says we simply cannot afford the $4 million a year, but we can afford his $1.7 million increase in his office budget, in order for him to spew more useless propaganda about himself, and what a great job he is doing.

    I don't understand why we need all these new prison facilities either if crime, including violent crime is falling.

    Stockwell Day, says most crime is unreported, so who exactly are the police arresting to put in these prisons??

    It seems to me that the Harper, tough on crime mantra is a slogan and not a solution.

    It sells well, and it sounds good, and offers voters a simplistic solution to the complex issue of crime.

    I find the Harper, government very strange in their approach to most issues.

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  39. AJR79 there are still oustanding issues with Geurgis.

    Did she allow her husband to use her official government passport in Cuba ?

    Did she violate any rules by promoting a client of her husband's company to her cousin's town council ?

    Did her husband use her office resources improperly ? (I won't take her word for it, she's denied things that have turned out to be true later on.)

    If those issues are settled then I have no problem with her returning to caucus.

    However, if internal polling in her riding shows that she's not in good standing with the voters then I think an open nomination should be held. Let her run against all comers.

    Nobody has a "right" to a seat, a nomination, or a place in caucus without the consent of the voters.


    ***

    AJR79 we could legalize pot and prostitution tommorow and we'd still need these powers.

    Gangs deal in more drugs than marijuana. Meth, Ecstacy, and Cocaine come to mind.

    And even in places where prostitution is legal there is still human trafficking because they don't need to be paid wages.

    Do you know any guy with 6 pot plants that supplies a gang ?

    There is a standard of proof involved here.

    There is judicial oversight.

    That's a cute slogan about not giving the state extra powers but its a naive one if you want to fight crime. We have a strong judiciary in Canada and a Charter that is vigoursly enforced.

    Honestly, there was a healthy dose of paranoid thinking in that article that goes beyond libertarian thinking.

    ***

    Both you and Earl read the NP and have a similiar ideological profile. Both of you have been fretting about all these mini-"scandals" every time they pop up.

    So no its not a coincidence. But neither is it some kind of clear sign that a big chunk of the CPC base is going to stay home in the next election.

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  40. AJR good points all.



    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/second-reading/bruce-anderson/stephen-harpers-summer-so-far/article1665839/

    BTW I'm not a libertian. Far from it. It just doesn't make sense for government to be so involved in people's lives. How can a wing of the CPC that advocates getting rid of the CBC and stripping the CTRC of most of its powers also support the intrusion into people's lives by dtermining what they can put into their bodies, as regards soft drugs. Further we have legalized bookmaking in most provinces so why not go the rest of the way?

    As regards prostitution has any society ever been successful in enforcing laws against it?

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  41. Shadow,

    I wasn't aware that this was a "scandal" quite yet. I wouldn't mind it becoming one thou.

    If there is one area where I am constanly at odds with this government, it is in the law-and-order department.

    Other issues I care about (eg. foreign funding with regard to abortion) go away after a while. This crime agenda keeps on stinking.

    Do you really believe it was wise (or right), for the government to enact such a broad reaching law, without putting it thru parliament first?

    To give you an idea how ridiculous it is, a home poker game could be considered a serious crime, by the letter of the law.

    I'm sure it won't be coming to that, but to swallow this assault on our civil liberties may be a bridge too far for me.

    We'll see how I feel about in next week. Right now, I'm not amused.

    ReplyDelete
  42. 49 steps let me clear a few things up for you.

    *Stockwell Day has already explained why the short form is mandatory and the long form isn't.

    Some basic information is nessecary for the core functions of our government. That's the short form. Like taxation its a nessecary evil.

    The long form is not nessecary to the core functions of government, its a subsidy to social planners and academics. It cannot be justified as a nessecary evil.

    The agricultural census is under review but is nessecary because of supply management programs. The Liberals opposed closing down the wheat board so there you go.

    *Prison farms don't provide marketable skills. Stats show that next to nobody who leaves prison takes up agricultural work. The money would be better spent on jobs training for the trades.

    * After years of savings Harper's office budget has now grown to the size of Paul Martin's. A lefty communications expert on CBC explained that this is a justifiable increased in this new age of facebook, twitter, and ethnic media. Total non-issue.

    *Stockwell Day didn't say MOST crime is unreported. He said the rise in unreported crime is a concern, which it is.

    About 40% of crimes are unreported, including 90% of sex crimes.

    Its something the government plans to tackle, which if successful will indeed result in the need for more prison spaces.

    The main reason, however, is that mandatory minimums, dangerous offenders laws, and ending the 2 for 1 have increased the head count in prisons.

    Ask Rob Nicholson, Vic Towes, or PBO Kevin Page and they'll explain the situation to you.

    ReplyDelete
  43. As to Guergis, removing her from cabinet was prudent; removing her from caucus was overkill, and a bit puzzling.

    You would think she would have to be convicted of something, before being so totally expelled.

    As for a nomination battle, I'm always up for it. How about one for Rob Anders, out in Calgary West, while we're at it.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Helena Guergis on the cross in Macleans interview. If she were to run as an Independant Conservative as she's saying, they could lose that seat. She may even win.

    Too funny what I run across sometimes. Helena
    Guergis shooting at imaginary Taliban phot-op
    .

    ReplyDelete
  45. AJR79 unless your home poker game is run by organized crime then no, its not at all a serious crime and its simply not affected by these new measures. Nor is someone seeing a hooker. Nor is someone owning 6 pot plants.

    Again, the standard is participation in an organized crime syndicate.

    The only way these powers are "broad" or "far reaching" is if one assumes that they will be automatically abused by police.

    But that ignores the role of prosecutorial discretion and then judicial review. Even if one is arrested the charges would be tossed and the false arrests would quickly stop.

    ***

    AJR79 the removal of Helena from caucus was neither puzzling or overkill.

    She was temporarily suspended pending the resolution of ethical and criminal investigations.

    I believe that's the standard that's been used in the past. Now, if she's still removed after everything is said and done and she's all cleared - then I agree that something isn't quite right.

    As for Anders my understanding is that he was subject to a vote on whether or not to hold a nomination meeting and the decision was no.

    There was then an attempt to hold another vote after the election of a new EDA but it was too soon after the first one to be done under the rules.

    I suppose, in fairness, Helena should be subject to the same standard before an open nomination is held.

    ReplyDelete
  46. Shadow,

    It's my understanding that removing someone as minister with allegations swirling is common practice, but turfing them from caucus without any allegations being proven is uncommon, if not unprecedented.

    I can't think of one instance of this. Can you?

    I'm glad that you have such faith in the restraint of our police, and judiciary. I can't say I share your comfort.

    One could think it's paranoid to raise the alarm on this, or one could think it's naive not to.

    Where's Ira anyway? He'll help sort this out.

    I hope Coyne, Cosh, and Conrad all take their pound of flesh out of this too.

    It should be interesting, and entertaining if they do.

    ReplyDelete
  47. Hey Earl,

    I wouldn't classify myself as libertarian either. However on social, and crime issues I find my rationale for disagreement with other types of conservatives stem from my dislike of the nanny state, government meddling and waste, and belief in a certain level of individual freedom from state interference.

    I don't understand how someone can rail against liberal societal engineering, and then be O.K with conservative societal engineering. These are concerns with a libertarian bent.

    Prohibition is senseless. Stepping up enforcement and incarceration doubely so.

    ReplyDelete
  48. AJR if Iggy could just articulate some policy that was fiscally conservative and move to legalize pot and a few other soft drugs and let the provinces extend their bookmaking activities to single game events then he'd have my vote. Heck, right now I'm so upset at Harper that I think the CPC needs to be cleansed of him. If I wasn't afraid of tax and spend Iggy I'd jump on the Liberal bandwagon.

    BTW I used to adamantly opposed to the legalization of any drugs. I've never used drugs. However in my later years wisdom has caught up to me and it is clear that we are expending way to much money and time trying to prevent things we can't prevent. In the meantime, we fill the coffers of organized crime , rather than the coffers of government. I guess it gives the Harperites someone to fill their new jails with.

    I have to say that my exposure to Shadow has made me question my commitment as a Conservative. The more he defends every ridiculous action by this government the more inclined I am to look elsewhere. He reminds me of Ezra Levant.

    http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2010/08/05/don-martin-harper-needs-to-stick-to-issues-that-matter/

    ReplyDelete
  49. http://www.canada.com/story_print.html?id=3371419&sponsor=

    More of on Government Intrusion and Why.

    ReplyDelete
  50. AJR79 I wouldn't call it "faith" in the judiciary, I just know how liberal the entire criminal justice system is.

    When you have individuals racking up 100+ auto thefts without doing time mandatory minimums start to make sense.

    Look at Rahim Jaffer and how his charges were tossed. We have perhaps the most expansive charter that places the most restrictions on police in the western world.

    The balance has been shifted way too far in the favour of criminals and is now being corrected.

    Crime rates are still WAY, WAY up from when stats were first started being collected.

    I think its important to at least make an attempt to tackle this very serious problem.

    ***

    Unprecedented ? No no. Here's a link to Vancouver MP Blair Wilson who "quit" caucus without being charged/convicted of anything:

    http://www.cbc.ca/canada/british-columbia/story/2007/10/29/mp-resign.html

    Carolyn Parrish was suspened for criticizing Paul Martin in some comments she made.

    A bunch of Alliance members were suspended for criticizing Stockwell Day.

    Suspending from caucus for a wide variety of reasons has been the norm.

    ReplyDelete
  51. "It's my understanding that removing someone as minister with allegations swirling is common practice, but turfing them from caucus without any allegations being proven is uncommon, if not unprecedented.

    I can't think of one instance of this. Can you?"

    2010 Serge LeClerc of the Saskparty sat outside of caucus (and still does today) based on allegations made on a tape received by the CBC talking about marajauna and cocaine. The RCMP reported the tape was falsified, Leclerc cleared.

    The one difference between that case, and Guergis (and many scandals the Chretien years for that matter)... was that LeClerc was honorable and removed himself when the scandal came about.

    Let see tho.. others going back to Mulroney's government.
    Caroyln Parrish
    Jim Pankiw
    Jag Bhaduria
    Gilles Bernier
    Denis Pronovost


    I know I didn't get them all... but it seems quite common that someone would be removed from caucus when involved in a (real) scandal, or while under RCMP investigation.

    ReplyDelete
  52. Peter, do you have something to contribute to the conversion?? or have you stooped to allowing the Toronto Star columnists to do your spinning for you??

    You've gone from linking and promoting your own blog to just linking and promoting the opinion bloggers from the star. Atleast when others do it there is often some of their own commentary involved.

    ReplyDelete
  53. You've gone from linking and promoting your own blog to just linking and promoting the opinion bloggers from the star.

    If you can't accept that others have a different view than you then you are a twit. Since Eric clamped down on me I've had to use links to original source rather than my own forum. Live with it !

    ReplyDelete
  54. I guess I forgot about Parish. I think I remember a couple of other ones. Fair enough, it's not that unusual.

    Now the questions I have to ask are:

    Do you think that she will run as an Independant?
    and
    Do you think a Conservative candidate can win if she's running?

    It's a political miscalculation to leave her out of the tent.

    I believe she has some strong support in her riding, even thru all this. She was cleared by the RCMP, and the ethics charges too.

    But that's Steve, and Guys call to make I guess. Good luck to them on that one.

    ReplyDelete
  55. AJR79 and Earl its a little weird that you guys aren't defending the move to make the census voluntary given all your anti-government intrusion rhetoric.

    Don't know if you heard about the recent case in which a federal tax collector was snooping on rich people to try to hit them up for business deals.


    I wonder what kind of juicy information a rogue census worker could get ?

    Surely enough to commit some serious identity theft.

    And you're worried about police powers ? How about when CSIS starts going through this info.

    There is no legal limit to their powers to spy on Canadians.

    Certain individuals with privacy concerns shouldn't be forced to fill out this info.

    Do you disagree ?


    (BTW Earl, Ignatieff is on record as being anti-pot. He does not support the previous Liberal justice minister's move to decriminalize.)

    ReplyDelete
  56. Sun Media's new editorial squashes this pro-pot talk:

    http://www.ottawasun.com/comment/editorial/2010/08/07/14957406.html

    Money quote for people who claim prohibition doesn't work:

    Surely by that pretzel logic, we could solve all crime simply by legalizing all offences.

    ReplyDelete
  57. Wow Shadow, paranoid much? The census, afaik, has never had a security breach. If it had I'm certain the CPC would be letting us all know about it right now. Think about that, hundreds of years and not one breach (or at the very least no serious ones).

    To destroy the long form (and there is no doubt making it 100% voluntary does that) is just plain dumb. No province or private group can duplicate it as you need the mandatory nature to gain the baseline needed to tell if your survey is representative or not. Can some questions be removed? Of course. Could the penalties be just a fine? Of course. But what the CPC has proposed could only be proposed by someone who has no statistical knowledge (I doubt the prime minister has no statistical knowledge) or who has some other agenda - be it a desire to merge all databases which has 1000's of times the risk of someone hacking in [but carries tons more data] or who feels the data gathered hurts them in some way.

    Oh, has to the legalizing pot thing - do you feel we should go back to prohibition for alcohol as well? After all many die every year due to it, far more than from all drugs combined as I recall.

    ReplyDelete
  58. I must say that I find Stephen Harper, endlessly amusing.

    He has finally decided to emerge from the Harper, bunker and decide he should make himself more visible to Canadians.

    Maybe he will even decide he is up to the task of talking to the peasants.

    Maybe he will decide he is up to the task of taking unscripted questions from journalist and finally start to answer some tough questions, about his woeful performance, and his sorry record.

    Stephen Harper, is even going to go to a BBQ today in British Columbia, to spew some more baloney about how great he is, and what a fantastic job he is doing.

    Perhaps, Harper's absolute #1 cheerleader Shadow, will be invited??

    It also seems that the $20 billion stimulus spending is not going well and there are some infrastructure projects that will not be finished before the March 30deadline.

    Harper, is also showering money on Conservative riding's in Quebec, but it seems that those ingrates just aren't that into Stephen Harper.

    Stephen Harper, is also starting to garner a lot more negative press, which he so richly deserves.

    Stephen Harper's incompetence is to such a degree now that even his friends in the media cannot cover it up.

    Yes, the wheels are starting to come off the Harper's shiny red wagon.

    The Canadian people are on to him, and they realize that this emperor has no clothes.

    ReplyDelete
  59. AJR79.

    I think there is about a 90-95% chance that she will run again.

    Maybe a 20% chance that she can make nice long enough to get back into caucus before the election (maybe more farther out, but almost no chance if it happens this fall)

    As for the election day result... I agree she has some strong support in the riding. I am just too far away to even guess. She has taken some big hits from the media that is now trying to use her as a stick to beat the PM.

    However Geurgis/Tories won Simcoe Grey with 55% 20% lib, 10 ndp 10 green. Without Dion I think the previous election results might have been just as good a measurement given that it was basically liberals staying home or switching to greens in 2008.
    40,30,10.



    I am thinking that if she cannot get back into the party there is 2 situations that result, 50-50 basically for right now.

    She enters the race but cannot pull enough votes to be a contender, but she will probably pull enough to make it a 2 way race between the tories and the liberals.

    The other situation is that her reputation wasn't hurt as bad as we think, and she can pull enough votes and it becomes a 3 way race. Tories, liberals, Geurgis. I think in that situation it would be a complete tossup who wins.

    So I definitely think she will choose to run... and given those 2 situations and how they might play out... I give her about a 20-25% chance of retaining her seat.

    ReplyDelete
  60. John Northley how is it "paranoid much" to point out people might have their information leaked ?

    Private medical docs end up in dumpsters all the time. A provincial and a federal tax collector were just caught raiding people's info.

    The fact that there hasn't been a breach so far just seems like luck. Or else we don't know about it.

    Although i'm sure there's been "official" breaches before. Census info was used to track Japanese, Germans, and Italians during WW2. Wouldn't be surprised if CSIS used the info on Muslims today.

    BTW - According to Don Drummond making the long form voluntary would NOT destroy it. It would just take three cycles before the data became useful again.

    And private polling could indeed replicate most of the information, it would just require large sample sizes.

    ***

    Alcohol prohibition ?

    Its worked wonders on some native reserves and remote northern communities where there used to be widespread addiction.

    But alcohol in small quantities is actually healthy.

    And its part of many cultural heritages (and even some religions) in a way that pot simply is not.

    So no, I would not support returning to outright alcohol prohibition.

    Although sensible restrictions on drunk driving, closing bars at a certain hour, public intoxication, etc do exist and do work.

    ReplyDelete
  61. How is it "paranoid much" to point out people might have their information leaked?

    Well, I could point out that you could die from lightning strikes if you dare to step outside even if it is bright daylight, or that you could be hit by a car while walking on a sidewalk so keep watch for cars even if there is a barrier (they could jump the barrier).

    There is a difference between reasonable and unreasonable concern. The CPC's stance on the census lands firmly into the paranoid unreasonable area unless there are major leaks of information that have been hidden from the media and that the CPC refuses to release to the public.

    As to Don Drummond, you should be careful about changing his position. He has stated...

    "If, for example, in 2011 we did one more run of the mandatory survey and we ran a voluntary one on a pilot project at the same time, then we could benchmark them, then I think we would probably be OK, because we would know how to adjust for those biases."

    http://www.financialpost.com/Corcoran+Time+census+reform/3329465/story.html#ixzz0w7zNAtPI

    Note how all who they interview state we do need at least one more mandatory census mixed with a voluntary to know what bias' would be created so that there would be some method to adjust for them. You don't just shift instantly from mandatory to voluntary, you have to work to determine the bias' that will occur.

    Large sample sizes? You can poll as many as you wish but if you have a couple of groups who are answering it more often than others then you have junk data, regardless of if you have 100 or 100,000,000 respondents. To adjust it from junk to real data you need to know what those bias' are. Thus the need for the mandatory census to figure out those bias'.

    I do find it an interesting experiment to try to run a voluntary census parallel to the mandatory one so you can see what bias' will occur. However, you would have to keep checking for those long term too. Perhaps doing voluntary mixed with mandatory for various smaller areas much like trying out the voluntary was done in the USA.

    As to pot, it was legal up until the early part of the 20th century when that bizarre 'Reefer Madness' movie came out. Pot is useful for those who use it for medical purposes, and it has been used by various groups for tradition purposes before. I never touch the stuff (or cigarettes and very, very little alcohol) but the evidence shows it costs a lot to criminalize it vs the revenue it would produce if legalized. Seems an obvious choice from a risk/reward standpoint.

    ReplyDelete
  62. How is it "paranoid much" to point out people might have their information leaked?

    Well, I could point out that you could die from lightning strikes if you dare to step outside even if it is bright daylight, or that you could be hit by a car while walking on a sidewalk so keep watch for cars even if there is a barrier (they could jump the barrier).

    There is a difference between reasonable and unreasonable concern. The CPC's stance on the census lands firmly into the paranoid unreasonable area unless there are major leaks of information that have been hidden from the media and that the CPC refuses to release to the public.

    As to Don Drummond, you should be careful about changing his position. He has stated...

    "If, for example, in 2011 we did one more run of the mandatory survey and we ran a voluntary one on a pilot project at the same time, then we could benchmark them, then I think we would probably be OK, because we would know how to adjust for those biases."

    http://www.financialpost.com/Corcoran+Time+census+reform/3329465/story.html#ixzz0w7zNAtPI

    Note how all who they interview state we do need at least one more mandatory census mixed with a voluntary to know what bias' would be created so that there would be some method to adjust for them. You don't just shift instantly from mandatory to voluntary, you have to work to determine the bias' that will occur.

    Large sample sizes? You can poll as many as you wish but if you have a couple of groups who are answering it more often than others then you have junk data, regardless of if you have 100 or 100,000,000 respondents. To adjust it from junk to real data you need to know what those bias' are. Thus the need for the mandatory census to figure out those bias'.

    I do find it an interesting experiment to try to run a voluntary census parallel to the mandatory one so you can see what bias' will occur. However, you would have to keep checking for those long term too. Perhaps doing voluntary mixed with mandatory for various smaller areas much like trying out the voluntary was done in the USA.

    ReplyDelete
  63. John you are quite right to point out that the risk of having your information leaked is next to zero (but NOT zero itself).

    But for certain individuals the possibility is unsettling and nagging none the less. Should the heavy hand of government force them to divulge their info none the less ?

    A former head of StatsCan said that she instructed her staff to be very understanding of people with privacy concerns.

    And we know when people object, like Warren Kinsella, they're often just given an exemption.

    Nobody has ever been jailed and very few fines have been given out.

    What is de facto is now de jure.

    Its a general principle in a mature democracy that the law applies and is enforced equally to and for everyone.

    ***

    I haven't changed Don Drummond's position. His position is to leave the census alone.

    On a commentary on the CBC he explained how making the switch wouldn't end the usefulness of the long form forever.

    It would end comparability to past cycles. So a certain number of new cycles would be required to obtain useful information about how things were trending.

    I point this out to say that you are being overly dramatic in saying there is no doubt that this would kill the long form.

    It would only kill it for 15 years.

    ***

    A private firm can easily conduct any poll they wish.

    It can be weighted with short form info on age and gender.

    If necessary the pollster can ask about other factors like race and education.

    Pollsters have many different techniques to reduce response bias. They usually require a larger sample size because certain respondents are left on the cutting room floor.

    ReplyDelete
  64. John I have nothing against medical marijuana nor does this government.

    "the evidence shows it costs a lot to criminalize it vs the revenue it would produce if legalized. Seems an obvious choice from a risk/reward standpoint."

    This is a little misleading. Much of the market will still be underground, just like how there is a booming tobacco market.

    Who want to pay 12-15% sales tax on pot, let alone whatever sin taxes governments cook up ?

    And what about lost productivity from increased use ?


    All in all i'm a little perplexed by Earl and AJR79.

    We're four years into the Harper government.

    I live in BC and people are still smoking the stuff at bus stops, on campus stairs, and in the parks (even though regular smoking is now banned pretty much everywhere.)

    Quite honestly the proposed Liberal policy of decriminalization would probably have TOUGHENED pot laws because police would be handing out fines all the time.

    Its a lot easier to pass out a fine then actually arrest something for a charge no prosecutor is going to bother with.

    ReplyDelete
  65. Shadow, I am in the survey business so I do know a thing or two here.

    "Pollsters have many different techniques to reduce response bias. They usually require a larger sample size because certain respondents are left on the cutting room floor."

    Uh, slight problem, without the long form you CANNOT adjust for religion or various other bias' that are currently asked in the long form only. It is impossible unless you know what percentage of those who respond SHOULD be of each group. Poll 100 people, 1000, 1 million, 1 billion and it will still be biased and unfixable without a solid base to compare to.

    That is the problem. Mr. Drummond proposes doing a voluntary mixed with mandatory to have a way to measure how often groups don't respond in an effort to adjust - basically instead of 20% getting a mandatory form maybe 5% or 2% would. Hardly ideal (ideal would be 100% getting the long form) but at least then the long form doesn't become a useless exercise.

    ReplyDelete

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