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Federal NDP - We Are Not Socialists Any Longer - Really

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Mulcair and the federal NDP are removing any reference to socialism from the Preamble of the NDP Constitution.

Presto... instant free enterprisers, eh? :lol:

BTW that sound you just heard was the sainted Tommy Douglas turning over in his grave.

And the dedicated socialists in the NDP are not pleased:

A small group of socialist delegates continued to cause a ruckus at the NDP convention in Montreal Saturday, drawing the ire of mainstream delegates.

At the same time, the tension suggests the debate set for Sunday over taking the word "socialist" out of the party's consitution could be fraught. The move, which former NDP leader Jack Layton supported before his death in 2011, was set aside at the party's last convention.

The socialist delegates voiced concern Friday over the party's use of American Democrats as speakers. Then on Saturday, they were forced to put away a banner condemning U.S. President Barack Obama's use of drones in Pakistan, with which they greeted other delegates as they arrived at Montreal's Palais de congrès.

About 18 months ago the NDP leadership tried to change the Preamble by Executive action but that was contrary to the Constitution and was being opposed at the party convention. So they did the next best thing... they first deleted the Constitution from the NDP website and then restored it later but with a missing Preamble:

NDP Constitution Watch: The Preamble Vanishes.

by Kady O'Malley

As for the similarly sought after constitution, while it did indeed pop up as an item on the drop down menu on Friday afternoon, it appears that it underwent a rather substantial last-minute edit before being deemed acceptable for public release: namely, the as it turned out not so surreptitious removal of the preamble that caused such a ruckus at the party convention in June.


(T)he latest version of the constitution, as amended in June, finally showed up on the party website with suspiciously still-presumably-democratic-socialism-espousing-preamble-shaped blank space on the very first page. Whether the deletion was intentional or simply a slip of the mouse is, as yet, an open question -- in other words, I've asked, and I'm still waiting for an answer.

In the meantime, however, by a serendipitous stroke of luck, a bootleg version of the 2009-era constitution -- including the once-and-perhaps-still contentious content in question -- is still available for quiet contemplation, courtesy of the Toronto Star. Without further ado, then, behold ...The Preamble That They* Don't Want You To Read (Or Possibly Just Forgot To Include):

The New Democratic Party believes that the social, economic and political progress of Canada can be assured only by the application of democratic socialist principles to government and the administration of public affairs.

The principles of democratic socialism can be defined briefly as:

That the production and distribution of goods and services shall be directed to meeting the social and individual needs of people within a sustainable environment and economy and not to the making of profit;

To modify and control the operations of the monopolistic productive and distributive organizations through economic and social planning. Towards these ends and where necessary the extension of the principle of social ownership;

The New Democratic Party holds firm to the belief that the dignity and freedom of the individual is a basic right that must be maintained and extended; and

The New Democratic Party is proud to be associated with the democratic socialist parties of the world and to share the struggle for peace, international co-operation and the abolition of poverty.

*The exact identity of 'They' is, of course, still to be determined. Over to you, NDP!

Here was a discussion at of the Mysterious Case of the Missing Preamble that began with this post:

I checked the NDP website today and found that the Constitution had recently been restored. It went missing before last June's convention.

But the preamble of the Constitution has been deleted. The Party Executive tried but failed at Convention to replace the preamble, with its reference to democratic socialism and the primacy of human needs over private profit; a watered down version was proposed instead, drawn up by dessicated party insiders.

Since the proposed amendment was never approved--the resolution was tabled--the original preamble remains in force. So where is it and why has it mysteriously disappeared?

And link to the old version:

And the new Preamble? Nary a reference to socialism to be found...

Canada is a great country, one of the hopes of the world. New Democrats are Canadians who believe we can be a better one – a country of greater equality, justice, and opportunity. We can build sustainable prosperity, and a society that shares its benefits more fairly. We can look after our seniors. We can offer better futures for our children. We can do our part to save the world’s environment. New Democrats work together to these ends for the sake of our fellow citizens and in the interests of all of humanity.

New Democrats are proud of our political and activist heritage, and our long record of visionary, practical, and successful governments. That heritage and that record have distinguished and inspired our party since the creation of the Co-operative Commonwealth Federation in 1933, and the founding of the New Democratic Party in 1961.

New Democrats seek a future which brings together the best of the insights and objectives of Canadians who, within the social democratic and democratic socialist traditions, have worked through farmer, labour, co-operative, feminist, human rights and environmental movements to build a more just, equal, and sustainable Canada within a global community dedicated to the same goals.

New Democrats celebrate Canada’s diversity and the deep histories, traditions and aspirations of all of its peoples.

New Democrats believe in freedom and democracy, and in a positive role for democratically elected and accountable Parliaments, legislatures and the governments responsible to them.

New Democrats affirm a role for government in helping to create the conditions for sustainable prosperity. We believe in a rules based economy, nationally and globally, in which governments have the power to address the limitations of the market in addressing the common good, by having the power to act in the public interest, for social and economic justice, and for the integrity of the environment.

New Democrats belong to the family of other progressive democratic political parties that govern successfully in many countries around the world. In co-operation with like minded political parties and governments, New Democrats are committed to working together for peace, international co-operation, and the common good of all – the common good being our fundamental purpose as a movement and as a party.


After all that it now seems the Missing Preamble is now the Defunct Preamble as Mulcair has pushed through an amendment eliminating references to socialism in the Preamble to the federal NDP Constituion at its policy convention being held in Montreal.

Memo to the federal Liberals... "We are now you. Yours truly, Thomas J. Mulcair, Leader of what used to be the socialist New Democratic Party." ::D

NDP votes to drop 'socialism' from its constitution

NDP Leader Thomas Mulcair is hoping expunging any reference to socialism from his party’s constitution will make their policies more palatable to the average Canadian voter.

“We want to go beyond our traditional base,” Mulcair told CTV’s Question Period Sunday, speaking from Montreal where the NDP convention is taking place.

Party delegates voted overwhelmingly in favour of a contentious proposal to modernize the wording of the NDP’s constitution -- a decision which could potentially pit the party’s long-time left wing supporters against those who would like to see the NDP move more to the centre.

About 960 delegates were for the change, with 188 people, including the NDP’s status of women critic MP Niki Ashton, voting for the status quo.

Mulcair has said that by changing the wording of the party’s constitution, the NDP will not be moving away from its position on the political spectrum as a “progressive” party.

“We will continue to be about removing inequalities in our society,” he said.

Sunday’s vote comes a day after Mulcair’s leadership of the NDP was reaffirmed by party delegates, who voted 92.3 per cent against holding a leadership contest.

Mulcair, who succeeded former NDP leader Jack Layton after he lost his battle to cancer in 2011, said his decision to support the socialism motion reflects the late politician’s efforts to modernize the party.

“Jack started that modernization of the constitution. He wanted the wording to reflect the party’s ability to reach out to all progressives. We are essentially a progressive country,” Mulcair said.

“A lot of Canadians share our vision (but) they’ve not been convinced in the past that federally we’re capable of providing that good solid management. That’s what the next step is for us.”

This weekend, Mulcair has been urging his party to begin preparing for the next federal election that is more than two years away – one that will follow on the so-called “orange wave” that swept Canada in 2011, seeing the NDP claim 103 seats, mainly at the expense of the Liberals and the Bloc Quebecois in Quebec.

“By using language that resonates with a wider a public in Canada, we’ll be able to do what we have to do -- which is to defeat (Prime Minister) Stephen Harper’s Conservaties,” Mulcair told reporters after the vote on Sunday.

The new preamble to the NDP’s constitution will talk about the government’s role in “helping to create the conditions for sustainable prosperity.”

It will also refer to building a future that will bring “together the best of the insights and objectives of Canadians who, within the social democratic and democratic socialist traditions, have worked through farmer, labour, co-operative, feminist,” and other movements.

Former NDP MP Bill Blaikie, whose daughter Rebecca Blaikie spoke at the convention, helped penned the new preamble.

The convention also introduced a softer side of Mulcair to the public, casting him as a family man. On Friday, the NDP showed a video of Mulcair with his siblings, his wife and his two sons.

“We understand that that is a part of modern politics,” explained Mulcair when asked by reporters of his decision to share a part of his personal life. “People want to know a little bit more about you.”

The party has also enlisted the expertise of Jeremy Bird, a former 2012 Obama campaign advisor, to help modernize the New Democrats leading up to the 2015 election.


There is no word yet if the Adrian Dix led BC NDP happy class warriors are planning a similar disavowal of socialism.

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The new NDP for over the last decade has been moving closer to the center although still on the left of it. It is an accurate reflection of the change in population - beliefs and economic reality. This started with Roy Rominow who showed that an NDP party could be good financial stewards of the economy and hold some core family/worker values vs the right wing who holds businuess values over individual values.

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Given Justin's penchant for removing a foot from his mouth only long enough to switch feet, I am unsure how that will play out.

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Is Mulcair still rocking a beard? That's a bad look. I dont trust anyone with a beard. And Harper walks like a duck and has bad hair.

That's why Justin Trudeau gets my vote. Young, tough and great hair. I'm not worried about the brains department. He is a politician after all.

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I hate the idea that anyone who votes for the NDP must be a socialist. If I vote NDP in the national election it is because it is in my best interests to do so. Why does having my own interests in mind make me a socialist?

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Bee Eye Itch please!

Haw! What's next, the Green Party announcing its no longer about environmental issues? The BQ saying it no longer supports Quebec sovereignty and culture?

Oh and socialism *is* a dirty word, though to a far lesser degree than it should be, comrades.

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I hate the idea that anyone who votes for the NDP must be a socialist. If I vote NDP in the national election it is because it is in my best interests to do so. Why does having my own interests in mind make me a socialist?

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