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Common Wisdom?

Why I am Working on James Morton’s Campaign

Since May 2nd, I have listened to many explaining how horrible the cpc government is and how vital it is to the country that the Liberal Party come back. I believe they are sincere. My feelings are a little different. To me, the Liberal party of this century has taken navel gazing to such a high art form that its most advanced political members can do accurate freehand renderings of their intestinal tracts. Frankly, the loss of the Liberal Party of 2001 – 2011 would not be terribly significant.

So, I am asked, why do I expend time, effort and lucre for a party which, at this time, I would not mourn? I do so for two reasons:

1. The party has a foundation in history.

2. It's competitors are hidebound creatures of ideology whose long term success would be unfortunate for Canada.

At the Biennial Convention in January, we have the opportunity to make changes to the party and how it works. Frankly, I am not optimistic. Like so many elections, the candidates who are yelling for change are so tied up in internal Party politics that a dictionary definition of the word "change" should show their posteriors, walking away. Still, there are exceptions. In the race for VP (English) one is James Morton.

I have known James for some years. Not the closest of friends, I have had the opportunity to see James in action over decades, rather than months. I have seen a rational person with a defined set of beliefs who will work harder that one could ever expect. As a lawyer, he practices in both Toronto and Nunavut. Between his practices he is a senior volunteer for the Liberal party, he writes, lectures, is often heard and seen in media, he blogs and tweets and, somewhere during all this he has published almost twenty books.

James is a passionate Liberal. He truly believes that the party can have something to contribute to the Canadian political landscape. I have known James long enough to give him the benefit of the doubt. To that end, I have been happy to work with him, to help refine ideas which can help the Liberals regain some of their historical gravitas. James ideas and initiatives, while aimed at the Liberal Party, are those that apply to any large organization with many semi-autonomous local sub-organizations.

Of James' competitors, I am sure they are nice people. One is very new to the party. I am sure he is a good man but this is not the time to be learning the location of the washrooms. The other grew up in the party, rising from position to position as a youth. I am sure he thinks it is his turn. I think we should wait to bring the entitled types back until we want to sink the party again.

Its time to bring in people who have worked hard, are passionate but whose resume is not defined by their Ottawa work history.

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Posted by Carey Miller - January 4, 2012 at 4:27 pm

Categories: Common Wisdom?, James Morton Campaign, Politics   Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Wisdom makes me smile

My friend Karen Mock passed this along to me and, as she wrote, it is too good not to pass along.

A very self-important college freshman attending a recent football game took it upon himself to explain to a senior citizen sitting next to him why it was impossible for the older generation to understand his generation.

'You grew up in a different world, actually an almost primitive one,' the student said, loud enough for many of those nearby to hear. 'The young people of today are much more advanced than people your age. We grew up with television, jet planes, space travel, man walking on the moon and the Internet. We have cell phones, nuclear energy, electric and hydrogen cars, computers, automated manufacturing, amazing
technologies, …and,' pausing to take another drink of beer.

The senior took advantage of the break in the student's litany and said, 'You're right, son. We didn't have those things when we were young…..so we invented them. Now, you arrogant little shit, what are  YOU doing for the next generation?'

The applause was resounding…

1 comment - What do you think?
Posted by Carey Miller - October 27, 2011 at 1:10 pm

Categories: Business, Common Wisdom?, Politics, Technology   Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Regarding the Ongoing Irrelevance of Keynesian Economics

As I see more of them, my enjoyment of Barry A. Deutsch's cartoons increases. I recommend you visit the Ampersand blog to check out the entire selection.

I enjoyed this one especially, as I can never understand how business leaders are so antagonistic toward Keynesian economics. When the economy starts to suffer, these paragons of independence approach the government on their knees, shaking their begging bowls with rage.

Your thoughts?

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Posted by Carey Miller - October 7, 2011 at 4:45 pm

Categories: Ampersand Cartoons, Business, Common Wisdom?, Politics   Tags: , , , , , ,

Common Wisdom I Just Don’t Get – Outsourcing

Here's what I don't understand about outsourcing. Perhaps you can help me.

I understand there is a whole world of people that will spend long hours in factories for much less money than North Americans will.

I understand that holding down labour costs makes prices lower because even with the cost of transportation, unit prices for products are lower.

I understand that this allows production companies to keep margins as high as possible with small price increases.

All of the above seems reasonable.

What I don't understand is the long term benefit.

It seems to me that the consequences of outsourcing are predictable. They would seem to be:

  • Fewer jobs in North America
  • More difficulty for those without higher education to find jobs which will allow them to raise a family
    • The 80/20 rule applies here. The 80% were in jobs which required little or no higher education. Those jobs are now scarce and pay even less
  • More difficulty for those with higher education to find jobs
    • Most of those jobs were in professional services or management of some sort. It seems obvious that if the manufacturing is no longer here, the jobs which provided services to those companies which actually produced something will disappear over time
  • Downward pressure on wages
    • If jobs become more scarce, competition will drive the wage one will accept downward
    • I understand that in the last 20 years, the real wages for most families have, in fact, not gone up at all
  • Increased social unrest
    • Should people realize that they will never catch the carrot, why should they continue to operate within the recognized social limits?

Maybe there is an upside but I don't quite see it. Can you help?

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Posted by Carey Miller - June 12, 2011 at 4:58 pm

Categories: Common Wisdom?, Politics   Tags:

Garbage Collection – A New Peace Corps?

Still, I think that the “spending problem” is not based on agreements with the unions. I believe the spending problem is structural. It has to exist based on the structure of the civil service. I believe a structural change can ease or eliminate the spending issue, while driving immensely greater immediate and long-term value.


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Posted by Carey Miller - July 29, 2010 at 12:03 pm

Categories: Career, Common Wisdom?, Economy, Politics, VoteTO   Tags: , , , , ,

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