Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Blog not being updated

This will not surprise anyone who has been following; but this blog is not being regularly updated. Most of my blogging effort is spent over at Blunt Objects: http://blunt-objects.blogspot.ca/ so feel free to follow me there!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Liberal Leadership pt2

Time has passed so and update. Also check out http://blunt-objects.blogspot.ca/ for a post on the next Quebec Referendum, whenever it happens to be.

1 - Trudeau
Change? - Has been endorsed by Scott Brison, the "Right Wing Financial Symbol" of the party.
Result - Makes me more happy to back Trudeau if I decide to back him that is.

2 - Findlay
Change? - Has been the only one to come out with detailed policies in various issues.
Result - Pushed into 2nd place in my personal consideration.

3 - Garneau
Change? - Has been about as exciting as a saltine.
Result - Pushed down in my personal consideration.

4 - Coyne
Change? - Don't know to be honest, have not be following.
Result - Moved up as others have moved down.

5 - Murray
Change? - Endorsed by David Suzuki.
Result - While I voted Green in the last 2 elections, I support an eco-capitalism not eco-socialism.

6 - McCrimmon
Change? - Has managed to impress a lot of people
Result - Moves up in my consideration.

7 - Cauchon
Change? - Also not been following
Result - Moves down (sort of) as others have moved up.

8 - Bertschi
Change? - Seemingly more incompetent.
Result - Last Place on my ballot.

9 - Takacsh
Change? - Dropped out
Result - Dropped out

Sunday, January 20, 2013

International Elections

A reminder that I maintain a discussion thread on a political forum here:


Where I follow international elections. Today there are elections in a German state. Later this week, in Israel. Next month, in Italy. Follow the thread for the latest RxR projections.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

My stand on the Liberal Leadership

Federally anyway.

This would be my vote and why:

1 - Trudeau
Why? - He might just be able to do the best at election time.
Why not? - I fear he will turn the Liberals into an NDP-Lite party like it was under his Father's administration. That is not a party I can support.

2 - Garneau
Why? - I think he will take the Liberals to the centre, where they belong.
Why not? - I fear that he does not have the political "stuff" to do the job.

3 - Findlay
Why? - She simply has the best policies out there.
Why not? - While she'd make a great cabinet minister, I don't know about leader. She's never really struck me as the leader type.

4 - Murray
Why? - As a former BC Liberal my fears about her being too progressive are allayed, while she has shown herself to be pro-green.
Why not? - Who is this person? She does not have the "presence" to be leader - then again the same applies to just about everyone else lower on this list.

5 - Coyne
Why? - Her policies seems to focus on structural reform more than being "Progressive".
Why not? - She's only run once and lost, this is not exactly the kind of record that makes for the best leader.

6 - Takach
Why? - Seems very interesting and fresh.
Why not? - That does not mean "good" either, he could be a terrible choice, as little is known about him.

7 - Cauchon
Why? - Better than taking a risk on the two below him on the list.
Why not? - Something about the man strikes me as terribly unethical.

8 - Bertschi
Why? - Seems to be, at first glance, not incompetent.
Why not? - None of his proposed policies say anything. All very vague and pointless.

9 - McCrimmon
Why? - I can't think of a single reason to back her actually.
Why not? - Policies seem 'scatterbrained', makes me question her competence. As well, wants to take the Liberal Party in directions I can not and will not support.

If I had to assign them points, from 100 at the top and 0 at the bottom, where would I rank them?

100 - Trudeau
95 - Garneau
85 - Findlay
45 - Murray
35 - Coyne
30 - Takach
10 - Cauchon
5 - Bertschi
0 - McCrimmon

So my top 2 choices are very close indeed.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Quebec Parties

I stumbled upon a great link just now while looking for some party logos for a feature I'm adding to the blog in the near future.


It follows the history of the parties in a simple graphic.

Monday, December 17, 2012

International Elections

A reminder to follow me here: http://www.mapleleafweb.com/forums//index.php?showtopic=20318&st=210 for the latest on international elections.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Fun with numbers: populations

Some fun facts:

Canada has 4 large provinces (population) and 6 small ones. The smallest (population) of the large provinces is Alberta.

In 2045, Alberta will have more people than all the provinces (and territories) smaller than it combined.

Manitoba and Prince Edward Island are growing faster than the other 4 "small" provinces. Manitoba, being the largest of the "small" provinces, will thus pull away from them, while Alberta pulls away from it. In the long term we will have Ontario, 3 "large" provinces, Manitoba, and 5 "small" provinces.

BC could overtake Quebec in terms of population as early as 2055. Alberta will eventually overtake BC (and thus Quebec), but this will take longer. No signs point to Ontario dropping from it's #1 spot (It would take to the year 2500 when both Ontario and BC meet up near 135 billion people - which is unrealistic to say the least)

Here are some fun facts about Ridings and population
Quebec has 125 provincial ridings. If the people-per-riding number were applied to each province, it would result in the following number of ridings:
Ontario - 203
BC - 70
Alberta - 58
Manitoba - 19
Saskatchewan - 16
Nova Scotia - 15
New Brunswick - 12
Newfoundland - 8
PEI - 2
Ters - 3 (1 each)

If you applied the Senate clause for PEI, removed BC and Alberta, and Capped Ontario at Quebec's numbers (IE a proposal to make "Quebec happy") you would end up with 327 seats, which is less than the 338 we will have in a few years.

If every province had the same number of persons-per-riding as Nunavut does, they would have the following:

NU - 18
YK - 19
NT - 23
PE - 79
NL - 290
NB - 424
NS - 520
SK - 583
MB - 682
AB - 2057
BC - 2482
QC - 5559
ON - 7251

Ontario's legislature itself would be so large as to qualify for 4 additional ridings.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

In the Provinces

As 2012 draws to a close, one question is on the minds of all Canadians. When is the next RxR post about the Provinces? The answer is today!

Ontario is expected to be the next province to go to the polls - at least I expect it to be. Once the new Liberal leader is chosen, there is a good chance the legislation will vote it out and we'll be heading to the polls. Current polls show the parties in a close race with the PC party having an edge. My off-hand projection is as follows:
PC - 50 (Tim Hudak)
Lib - 30 (?)
NDP - 27 (Andrea Horwath)
And by off-hand I mean I just wrote that up right now, without looking at any poll numbers (I have a great memory though) and the only math I did was making sure it adds to 107. Take it as a rough guide.
As for who the next Liberal leader will be, my gut says one of 3 people. Gerard Kennedy, Sandra Pupatelo, or Kathleen Wynne.

If the forces at work from outside the legislature get their way, we will be headed to another election very soon in Quebec as well. My off-hand projection is as follows:
PQ - 60 (Pauline Marois)
PLQ - 42 (?)
CAQ - 21 (Francois Legault)
QS - 2 (Francoise David)
Which is just as "bad" as what we have now in terms of balance of power.
My guess for PLQ leader is Philippe Couillard

BC votes on May 14th 2013. I'll be doing official projections as the date gets closer. In 2005 I entered a contest and won a book due to my getting BC so right (projections) and in 2009 I was off by 2 seats - Lib/NDP switch - and one independent. My BC projections have been great in the past, but with the new Conservatives, even I worry about how well things will turn out. Regardless, my current off-hand projection as as follows:
NDP - 55 (Adrian Dix)
Lib - 27 (Christy Clark)
Ind - 1 (Viki Huntingdon)
Con - 1 (Jason Cummins)
Grn - 1 (Jane Sterk)
There is a real chance that the Greens could snatch away 1 or more of the 7 seats in the Victoria-Saanich area. They will need to play their cards right. The Conservatives could also walk away with a few seats if they can get their act together and get quality candidates in either one of the 2 Peace ridings, or, the 5 ridings in the Boundary-Kelowna area. Outside of these 14 ridings, the battle with be Lib/NDP and the NDP will win most of those.

One of the few provinces left without fixed election dates. The next election is expected in the fall of 2013, or, the spring of 2014. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
Lib - 22 (Stephen McNiel)
NDP - 18 (Darrell Dexter)
PC - 11 (Jamie Baille)
I don't expect this government to last long at all.

On September 22 2014 NB will go to the polls. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
PC - 30 (David Alward)
Lib - 21 (Brian Gallant)
NDP - 4 (Dominic Cardy)

On October 5th 2015* PEI will vote. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
Lib - 21 (Robert Ghiz)
PC - 6 (?)
NDP - 0 (James Rodd)

On October 13th 2015* Newfoundland will vote. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
PC - 30 (Kathy Dunderdale)
NDP - 14 (Lorraine Michael)
Lib - 6 (?)

On October 19th 2015, Canadians from coast to coast to coast will go to the polls. My off-hand projection is as follows:
CPC - 160 (Stephen Harper)
NDP - 88 (Thomas Mulcair)
Lib - 80 (Justin Trudeau) [come on who else?]
BQ - 9 (Daniel Pallie)
Grn - 1 (Elizabeth May)

On November 2nd 2015*, Saskatchewan will go to the polls. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
SKP - 42 (Brad Wall)
NDP - 16 (?)

On April 19th 2016*, Manitoba will hold an election. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
PC - 31 (Brian Pallister)
NDP - 26 (Greg Selinger)
Lib - 0 (?)

On June 1st 2016, Alberta will hold an election. My current off-hand projection is as follows:
PC - 43 (Allison Redford)
WR - 40 (Danielle Smith)
Lib - 3 (?)
NDP - 2 (?)
I expect Liberal and NDP leaders to resign.

*A note on dates:
Manitoba has an official law changing it's date if it conflicts with a federal election. That changed date is what is displayed. The other provinces have no such laws, but may pass such laws prior to 2015. I expect them to.

Monday, December 3, 2012

How to project like I do

Instructions to project like me (and make maps too)

Quebec used as our example

Find the poll average for the current date and time. One way to do this is to go to a poll aggregator website, or, a website that has one attached, like http://www.threehundredeight.com/ Note down the numbers. Feel free to round a bit. This gives us the following numbers: 14C 23B 29L 32N You'll note the Greens appear to have a small base of support, but you will learn after doing many of these that the Greens will not be winning any additional ridings at these levels.

Open up this website: http://esm.ubc.ca/forecast.php and go to the 2015 projection (this page: http://esm.ubc.ca/CA15/forecast.php )

Select the province you are doing (in this case, Quebec) from the drop down menu. Also, begin by setting each square that shows 1.000 to 0.500. Also change the OTH and GRN numbers to 0.000

This is the "fun" part. Now you hit Project and see what the popular vote figures are. Then you hit back, and adjust your numbers. Example: The Liberals are at 14.6, but we want them closer to 30. Thus change their number from 0.500 back to 1.000 and hit project again. If you've done everything I've told you to, the Liberals should now be at 25.5%. The NDP is at 38.6% but we want them closer to 32%, thus go back and decrease their number.  Setting the NDP at .370 will give you exactly 31.7% popular vote. You will now notice the Tories are too high. Go back and lower them. 0.400 will get you where you want. Now however, both the Liberal and NDP numbers have gone up as a result. The NDP will need to be adjusted down once more. The Bloc is also too high. And once you do that, of course, you'll find the Tories have gone up. Eventually the Liberals will need an adjustment down too. This is where you must 'round' the already rounded numbers and use estimates.

Settle on numbers. The numbers I plan on using are 0.400 for the Tories, 0.850 for the NDP, 0.990 for the Liberals, 0.480 for the Bloc, and 0.000 for everything else. Now you select from the drop down menu to view all the ridings. I usually start with the party projected to win the fewest seats, in this case, the Tories. You'll note that some ridings appear in Red or Blue (the numbers) below the CPC column. These are ridings the Tories are projected to win using the numbers you've put in. Now go to your map (the completed map will be posted below if you don't have your own copy) and find the riding names for each of the won ridings and colour them in with the proper colour, in this case, Tory Blue. Do the same for the Bloc, Liberals, and NDP.

Look for 'errors'. Math projections do not account for local variations. Look for things in your projection that seem a bit fishy. Example: this projection shows the Liberals winning Outremont. The NDP's leader is running here, and while the Liberals may knock him off, it does seem a bit fishy that a party projected to win the province would be unable to elect it's leader in said province. This is when you need to use a human judgement call - or just use 308.com's math that shows star candidates can win about about 15% more than expected. Thus, Outremont should not be Liberal Red, but NDP Orange. Sainte-Marie is another case, but this time, it is a former leader in play. This projection tells us the Bloc should win. Last election the Bloc leader ran here, a man who was very popular in the riding, but the coming election will not see him run. Can the Bloc really hold on to Duceppe votes? Again, a judgement call is needed, and in my judgement, the answer is no. Thus, this riding becomes NDP Orange. Now look for ridings that appear out of place. Note the Liberals winning in Brome and Berthier. Brome is a historic Liberal/Red Tory riding. Thus it does make logical sense the Liberals could win here. Berthier however? Well remember the local NDP candidate had quite the controversy during the last election. If voters here want to reject the Bloc, and, if the Liberals put up a good candidate, they could run a dirty campaign and win. How about Saint Maurice, where the Bloc is projected to win? Remember the current MP here switched from NDP to Liberal, this riding could see vote splitting and thus, the Bloc could indeed win.

Your map should look like this:

And after the riding adjustments, your final projection should be as follows: 38N 21L 9B 7C
Write this down, as you'll need to use it again when you are done projecting the other 9 provinces and 3 territories; but for Quebec, you are now done.

You'll likely note this is the map of the current ridings. These will be out-of-date by the next election. Have no fear, the website you used to make these projections is usually quick to update it's federal forecasters, and when the official riding vote transcriptions are done, they will update. I can also assure you that once final map boundaries are submitted to the House of Commons, that I will have maps available as well.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Obama to be re-elected

I've seen enough polls, I'm declaring that Obama will be re-elected as President.

Monday, October 29, 2012


Here's something to think about. Sandy is going to hit almost exclusively Blue states. It probably won't turn any of them Red, but, it will drive down turnout.

That means rather than X number of votes from those states, there are now X-1 votes, with 1 being how ever many people stay home.

The end result?
In terms of the electoral college, no change. Obama is still likely going to win the election with somewhere between 275 and 300 EVs.
However, in terms of popular vote, we could see something we've never seen before.

Romney has been neck and neck with Obama for weeks, but, Obama retains an EV lead. What this means is that Romney is sweeping Red areas while Obama is not sweeping the Blue areas. The end result of this alone could mean Romney wins the popular vote while Obama gets re-elected.

With this storm driving down turnout in blue areas, the chances of this increases.

This has happened two times before. Bush V Gore in 2000, and Hays V Tilden in the 1800s. Both times, the Democrat won the popular vote but the Republican won the election. This could well be the first time the opposite happens.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Fun facts

If you were to combine the number of MPPs or MNAs with the number of MPs for Ontario and Quebec, you'd get the following.

108 Tories
64 Liberals
39 New Democrats
1 Independent
1 Vacancy

58 New Democrats
58 'Quebecois'
58 Liberals
24 'Tory Coalition'
2 QS

And if you added Senators to the mix

123 Tories
71 Liberals
39 New Democrats
2  Independents
2 Vacancies

66 Liberals
58 New Democrats
58 'Quebecois'
39 'Tory Coalition'
2 QS
1 Independent

One of the Ontario Vacancies is in Durham, a pretty solid Tory riding. The other is in the Senate where members are appointed; since this is my list, I'll make the appointments, and I'm deciding that Borys Wrzesnewskyj is getting appointed. (This has the same effect of Borys winning his riding in a by-election, and Opitz getting appointed to the Senate, something Harper would probably do)

124 Tories (Hudak)
72 Liberals (Rae)
39 New Democrats (Horwath)
2 Independents

For a balance of
124 Government
113 Opposition

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Monday, September 24, 2012

Canada: SatW Fan Art


This is some fan art I did for a webcomic on the topic of "Canada"

I hope you enjoy it :)

3 new Independents in the provinces

Since the last update, we have gained 3 new independents in the provinces.

BC Conservative MLA John Van Dorgan has quit the party to once again sit as an Independent. He is thus not "new" in that respect.

In New Brunswick, PC MLA Jim Parrott has been kicked out of the party due to this constant criticisms of the government.

In Newfoundland, Tom Osborne quit the governing PC Party, citing disappointment with the Premier.

And in the Yukon, the Liberal leader quit the party to sit as an independent. The Liberals other MLA will now become leader.

Sunday, September 23, 2012

Not dead

Just writing to let you all know I'm fine. I will be getting back up to speed at some point shortly.

Just needed a "break" from everywhere.

Saturday, September 15, 2012

History of the ElectoMatic and what I'm doing

Two seemingly unrelated topics but I will explain how they are one. First I want to explain the history of the ElectoMatic.

I've told you before about the game I play, Politics Canada. I founded this game in late 2003, and even that is a bit of a spin on events. Politics Canada had actually been alive before I ever found it, and, I did not even "find" it myself. What I found was a dead forum and a game that was inoperative. How I found it was though a similar game called Politics UK, or, PolUK. PolUK was founded in 2001 and had created various other games like PolUSA, PolAus, PolNZ and so forth. When I stumbled across PolCan it was a dead game that I revived myself.

One of the first problems was how to simulate elections. As admins, we would read all the election advertisements made by players and from that deduce a popular vote score for each province. How to turn this into seats though? After some research and much experimentation I came up with the formula of X^2 I will explain how it works.

Lets use the Quebec election as our example. The Liberals took 31.20% the PLQ 31.96%, the CAQ 27.06% and the QS 6.03%. First, we need to get rid of the decimal and get rid of the % sign. This puts the Liberals at 3120, the PQ at 3196, the CAQ at 2706, and the QS at 603

Now, we square it.

The Liberals end up with 9,734,400 the PQ at 10,214,416 the CAQ with 7,322,436 and the QS at 363,609. Now we total these numbers, and use these numbers to determine the share of seats. In this case, 35.23% for the Liberals, 36.96% for the PQ, 26.50% for the CAQ, and 1.31% for the QS. The simplest way to turn this into seat is to multiply this by 125. 44.0 for the PLQ, 46.2 for the PQ, 33.1 for the CAQ, and 1.6 for the QS. All get rounded down except for QS which gets rounded up. The final result is:


Not quite exactly the real end-results.

We can also throw other provinces into the mix, lets try this with Ontario 2011

or Alberta 2011

You can begin to see how this is just not accurate enough. One thing it does do, however, is give a very rough indication of how many votes is needed for a majority. If you are ever in a crunch, use this "just square it" formula to figure out what will happen.

So we needed something better.

While that was going on, I was made an admin at PolUK, and, the Elections Admin vanished at the same time. I was asked to run the election, and used my formula. As expected, the other admins were not big fans, so we set out to find a better way. This is when we stumbled across a program called UK Elect. It is a wonderful program that I still have, and suggest you get even if you are not British. The program allows editable scenarios, and you can use this to create your own fictional election tests, or even, put in another countries data and run elections over there. This is what we did for Canada. The problem however is that doing this was a very complicated process, and, since Elections only happened every 5 months or so in our game, I would quite literally forget how to do it each time.

Meanwhile, I was running election projections here on this blog, my earlier posts are at about this time, 2008. I've been a fan of the UBC-ESM Forecasters ever since I first saw them, and use them almost daily, even now. I realized after playing with the numbers that party-to-party swings were not working the way I thought, so I invented a new method. I would project on a curve. The party that did the best, compared to last election, would be set at 1.000 and all other parties would have their numbers reduced by the proper amount, so that the projected popular vote would be the same as the share of their real vote. In effect, I was applying a ratio method.

I had dual needs. I needed to find an alternative to UK Elect, and, I had to find a much easier less math-heavy way to do forecasts that did not require the UBC website to be online. This is when I started work on the ElectoMatic. The intent of the ElectoMatic was to mimic the results I would get in the UBC forecaster by using by "ratio" method. Eventually I figured out the math of how to do this. If I need a 5% increase, I don't apply a raw 5% to each riding, rather, I apply 1.05. The ratio method works wonders in places like Canada where we have "2.5" major parties in each province. The simple raw swing works great where you have two parties, but breaks down when you add more.

My first ElectoMatic was done based on the 1993 election, and was to be used in PolCan for our round based on the 1993 election. The program did what it had to for PolCan purposes and that was that.

However it occurred to me... My program is designed to take old election results, new poll results, and project the result. It seems to do that just fine. Why not use it for real elections, elections that have yet to occur. Thus midway though the 2008 election I introduced the ElectoMatic, and it worked. I later created an ElectoMatic based on the 1979 election and throw in 1980 popular vote results. The errors were rather minor.

So there you have it, the history of the ElectoMatic, a file created originally to give alternate history results of past elections. This is when we get into what I've been doing. You see alternate history, especially election alternate history, has always been something I'm interested in. People say that this or that party almost did this or that well in this or that election. With the ElectoMatic you can find out just how close they came.

That brings me to what I've been working on. User calivancouver has been helping me finish up the maps from the 1950s and 60s. The maps gave me an idea to test, how close did Social Credit come to being the official opposition in 1957. St. Laurent implied it was rather close. The problem is I don't quite yet have an ElectoMatic for this era. Part of the reason is the lack of Social Credit candidates in Ontario, giving spotty results.

At the same time the old questions I've had of how to compare the 1980 and 1984 PC vote in Quebec came to my mind. I wanted to know how much of the Social Credit vote went PC, so, I ran a basic test and the answer is not much. I've also been trying to see if I can patch the holes in Ontario for Social Credit in the 50's and 60's and the answer is I can. While they only ran 68 candidates in 1962, in the ridings they did not run, they ran candidates at other points during the era. Only 3 ridings did not have SC candidates during this time, and they can be estimated based on neighbouring ridings and other vote trends.

Thus brings me to what I've been doing. Along with the above, I want to create a new ElectoMatic for past elections. Most of the files I created were for the purposes of the PolCan game. Now I'm more interested in general alternate history. My experiments in Quebec in the 80s show that a single ElectoMatic can be used for the 1979, 1980 and 1984 elections. I will tinker around with the differences between 1988 and 1993 to find if a single file can do this as well, or, if the party-to-party swing is too great. 1997 and 2000 may also require individual files. I'll also take a look at the 4 most recent elections with the same things in mind, and of course, look at past elections such as 1968, 1972, and 1974, as well as 1953 though to 1965.

Another concern of mine is that there are some gaps.

See, Nationalism in Quebec prior to Levesque was a right-wing force. Having SC represent that trend is logical right up to the mid 70s. Prior to the constitution, left-wingers in Quebec were more than willing to trust Trudeau even if they did not care for his ideas on federalism, and there is a strong enough NDP presence in the province during this time for those who did not. 1984 saw a PNQ party, the first attempts at a Bloc Quebecois, and it is these numbers that can be used. In effect, this will allow me to simulate, in alternate history, a Quebec based party for all elections from future elections, going back clear to 1953.

A larger problem is that of Social Credit and Reform. While Reform did run in 1988 and can be forecast without problem to the year 2000, and, while Social Credit did run strong elections in the west to 1965, we still have gaps in the west. One thing the maps have made clear is that where SC did well, Reform did well, and vice versa. SC had a presence in 1968, and this could be used for elections on those ridings, but for 1979 and 1980, as well as elections since 2004, trying to figure out where a western based party would stand is difficult. Even more difficult, given that throughout the entire history of Social Credit, Reform, and the Alliance, only 3 MPs were ever elected from Ontario, is seeing where that party would stand in that province. Early information shows that in many of the areas Reform did well in Ontario in the 90s, Social Credit did well in the 60s, which is encouraging.

I will continue to work on these problems and hopefully have a shiny new set of ElectosMatic for all of you in no time.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Political Parties

I was browsing around the http://www.1calgarycentre.com/ website, when the thought came to me that I really should look at all the political parties we have here in Canada.

There is a full list you can find here http://www.elections.ca/content.aspx?section=pol&dir=par&document=index&lang=e but what do these parties stand for?

I think grouping them is actually somewhat simple.

First off, there are the socially conservative parties, or rather, party. The Christian Heritage Party.
Next, the Communist parties, both of them.
Next, the personal fronts. The Western Block Party is a personal front for Doug Christie.
Next are the self-admitted activist parties, which are only a party because of the tax credits. (AAEVPC)
Last, are the ethnic-based political parties, in this case, the First Peoples National Party.

This leaves us with a few other parties to play with. The Bloc Quebecois (BQ) the Canadian Action Party (CAP) the Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) the Green Party (GP) the Liberals (Lib) the Libertarians (Lbt) the Marijuana Party (Pot) the New Democratic Party (NDP) the Pirate Party (Pir) the Progressive Canadian Party (PC) the Rhinoceros Party (Rhi) and the United Party (UP). Also, the eligible party, the Online Party (OP)

Only one of these parties is firmly on the right, the CPC, so I will discount them. The Rhino party, while generally progressive, is a silly party. The Pot Party is a single-issue party, and thus, I will exclude as well. Lastly, the CAP is based on the old social credit idea, so I will also exclude them.

There are two centre-right parties. The PC and UP.
There is one main party with left-wing economic proposals. The NDP,
There are two parties with centrist economic proposals. The GP and Lib.
And there are three parties that are socially progressive, the OP, Lbt, and Pir

Of these however, there are three parties that are to the right of centre on fiscal issues; PC, UP, and Lbt, and three that are firmly on the left when it comes to world affairs, NDP, GP, Pir

Why am I brining all of this up? And why did I start with this 1calgarycentre website? A website that's oddly blue for a party that supposes to gather up non-conservative voters?

Simple. On their website they list 3 large "progressive" parties. The NDP, the GP, and the Lib.
As a Liberal I protest our inclusion. I don't consider the Liberals as much "progressive" as much "centrist" and "moderate". While the Liberals would fit in as "progressive" I feel the other two labels are closer to the mark.

What IS odd about this website is their inclusion of a 4th party, the Progressive Canadians. Lets remember that this party was founded to be a successor to the PC Party that dissolved in 2003. It's leader is a former Tory cabinet minister. In fact, this website even lists Joe Clark as a "Progressive". I'm willing to bet if you asked him yourself he'd define more as a "Conservative" and that's how his voters felt. Red Tories are still Tories. A left-wing right-winger is a right-winger who happens to be left-wing. Just as a progressive conservative is a conservative who happens to be progressive. He is still a conservative first.

The inclusion of the PC, but not the UP, which split off from the PC about a year ago, is suspicious, especially as the UP has a more left-wing platform. Worse when you consider that the Pirates are not to be found, despite clearly fitting in as more progressive. Then there is the fact that the OP is missing. The website's twitter account even says they are not an ABC party, they want to unite progressives.

So, how far do you have to stretch the definition of "Progressive" to include the new PC Party? Frankly, pretty far, especially given the other parties that exist. If someone told me the PC Party was "Progressive" and included on a list of "Progressive Parties" I'd say that other parties on that list must include the AAEVP, The BQ, the CAP, The Communists, the FPNP, the Greens, the Liberals, the Online Party, the Libertarians, the Pot Party, the Marxists, the NDP, the Pirate Party, the Rhino Party, and the United Party. But to include it and the "3 big" progressive parties is fishy.

Fishy given the attention given to Joe Clark, a PCer who won the riding in the past.
Fishy given the fact that the website is blue, a PC colour.
And fishy given that the graphics show 4 'boxes' representing the parties, not 3 or 5

Perhaps this is all just a mis-understanding or mis-reading on my part.

1calgarycentre adding links to the other progressive parties, specifically the United Party and the Pirate Party, would certainly help dispel any connections.

The webmaster has contacted me with an explanation that I'm not buying - but he says once all 3 parties choose candidates, the PC link will come down.

PLQ Leadership Update

Fournier, who had been my front-runner, has decided to serve as interim leader. This means that chances are that whomever is chosen as the new leader will be a former or current Federal politician. Lets examine some of them.

I've already listed the Liberal MPs who may run in my previous post on this topic. I still think a Trudeau run is a real possibility. Remember that Charest gave up a resurgent PC Party leadership because he heard 'the calling' of federalism. Trudeau may hear it as well. Of course, that risks having Dion start hearing voices and try to make a stab at it. It was then brought to my attention that a non-Liberal may run. Charest, after all, was a PC member. So who are the possible non-Liberal candidates?

Current or former Tories:

Lucien Bouchard
This would amuse me greatly, but beyond a few comments recently, there is no reason to think he wants anything to do with federalism.

Josee Verner
Verner held a membership in the ADQ, but with many ADQ voters going PLQ, and with Verner being a committed federalist, she may run if no higher calibre candidate does.

Lawrence Cannon
Perhaps the most serious person on the list so far. Cannon has a history as a former member of the PLQ and served rather well federally until his defeat in 2011.

Current of former New Democrats:

Francoise Boivin
A "rookie of the year" in her first term in parliament, Boivin is now a New Democrat, but is still somewhat popular among all sections. She could be a serious female candidate if she decides to run.

Romeo Saganash
He ran for federal leader of the NDP for reasons I don't understand, so perhaps he will chose to do for the PLQ as well.

Maps of federal elections 1953-2011

Our maps page is ready to go. I'm uploading all the maps as we speak.

I'd also like to ask you for some help. I'm also announcing a new and fun contest, the "Find the Errors" contest!
I've probably made a number of errors I've secretly inserted errors on purpose
The person who finds the most errors will be sent things get credit by having their name mentioned on the blog.

So what is and is not an error? Remember that the "official and final" maps only go up once all the errors are caught. Hence there are some minor discrepancies that are not errors, they are just a symptom of me not being 100% finished.

Not an Error: Various islands within a riding have the wrong colour.
Error: A riding has the wrong colour (IE, showing the wrong party has won).
Not an Error: The winning party is shown in a different shade than the legend.
Error: A Bloc seat is shown as a Tory seat, or vice versa.
Not an Error: Your map says "Montreal" but it includes Laval too.
Error: A riding is mis-labled either with the wrong number or name.
Not an Error: Two parts of the same riding have the same identifying number.
Error: Two separate and different ridings have the same identifying number.

Bonus points:
Finding ridings that had their name change midway from a boundary change, and noting the date of said change.


We now have pages. Over the next hours, days, weeks, and months, I will be adding content to all of them. A further post on the Maps page will be done once that page is complete (in a day, or hopefully, much sooner)

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Election maps and other things

Given that politics has quieted down, and will probably remain quiet for a little while, I am going to work on expanding the website. Things to expect.

I am completing a series of real riding by riding result maps (Federal) covering the period from 1952 to the present day.

I am working on result tables for comparison in all the provinces, and federally as well.

I will update you as I work.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Alternate History

I'm looking for some feedback about various possible alternate history stories between 1979 and 2003. Anyone who would be interested in being contacted with regard to this, please post below.