Archive for Social justice & diversity

Enkutatash! Melkam Addis Amet

Happy new year to all Ethiopian Canadians.  May the year now beginning be blessed with peace, justice, health and prosperity.

I was honoured to address Ethiopian Canadians yesterday at their festival in Christie Pits park.  Wonderful food, music and dancing were on offer and I stayed most of the afternoon.

Adriana Mugnatto-Hamu, Toronto-Danforth candidate, at Ethiopian New Year celebration
Crowd celebrating Ethiopian New Year at Christie Pits Park

የካናዳ ግሪን ፓርቲ መመሪያዎች በስድስት መርሆዎች ላይ የተመሠረቱ ናቸው፤ …

More action against Keystone XL pipeline

I previously wrote about Patricia Warwick, one of the “Fabulous 45” – so named because although they came to Washington expecting to face a $100 “post and forfeit” for defying the rules of the park in front of the White House, they discovered that those arrested the previous day were to be held for 3 days.  The 45 risked arrest anyway.

The actions against the Keystone XL pipeline (which would enable a vast expansion in the capacity for oil production from the tar sands) at the White House continued for another 12 days after Patricia’s arrest, with over 1200 arrests in total, including east Toronto residents Sharon Howarth, the Green Party of Canada candidate in Toronto-Danforth in the 2008 federal election and David Wilson, an oil industry retiree.  Tar Sands Action, which organized this demonstration, vows to continue working to oppose the pipeline

Sharon Howarth arrested protesting Keystone XL tar sands pipeline

David Wilson arrested protesting Keywtone XL tar sands pipeline

The action against the Keystone XL Pipeline is now moving to Canada, where activists are planning a sit-in on September 26. You can find out more and join here.

Condolences to Jack Layton’s family

Toronto-Danforth Greens extend their sympathy to Jack Layton’s family and to his NDP family and supporters.  Jack will always be remembered in this community as a tireless fighter, a passionate spokesperson, a man who loved Canada and inspired everyday heroes.

“I look forward to paying your taxes”

Annika Tabovaradan addresses Toronto City Council members at 2am and makes a tearful plea to keep area libraries open. She already has to wait 30 minutes for computer time.

One Green is worth 16 Conservatives

I have often thought of reversing the way that proportional representation is calculated and applying it to the MPs already in Parliament.

The one Green seat represents almost 580,000 votes.  166 Conservative seats represent 5.8 million votes.  So while each Conservative MP represents just over 35,000 voters, Elizabeth May represents 580,000.

Therefore one Green is worth 16 Conservatives.     Read more »

Elizabeth on removing per-vote subsidy

Elizabeth’s question regarding the budget was smart.  Watch the Conservative member avoid the question.  He does not answer why the government perversely chose to trim the most democratic and fair form of public finance for political parties.  The Conservatives like the subsidies that give rich people the majority of their money back when they contribute to political parties, but would deny the funding that goes to parties people vote for even when they can’t afford to contribute.

You can get a good explanation of what is going on here.

Bill McKibben’s alarming new video

If you watch through to the end of this short video, it covers why I entered politics. What is now at stake is food security, water security, and the ability to deliver the fundamentals of decent civil society. All of these are already stressed and becoming more so. Concerns about things like gas prices, while important in our current state of addiction, nonetheless need to be contextualized in a world of threats that are far, far greater.

Ontario NDP joining Jack Layton to help roast the planet and hurt the poor

About a week after the election, I wrote what I worried might be too strident a post and finally published it now.  Someone has to hold the NDP accountable.  Their climate policy is possibly the worst of all parties, as they continually find creative new ways to subsidize fossil fuels.     Read more »

The problem with the NDP

The NDP have now grown up into a mainstream, increasingly centrist party nickel-and-diming the poor for their vote and misleading on the environment.  I’m deeply disturbed by their success in Toronto-Danforth.

Over a week has passed since the night while I watched in horror as the Harper government got its majority coupled with the relatively minor shock of seeing the Green vote collapse in Toronto-Danforth despite the widely acknowledged strongest campaign we have ever had.

Nationally I am most concerned about a majority government which clearly caters to oil industry priorities.  In Toronto-Danforth specifically, I’m concerned about the success the NDP has had with convincing voters with timid and contradictory policies that will do little for climate change and will hurt the constituents the party has professed to care about in the past.  I ran a campaign promoting the positive aspects of the Green plan without challenging the obvious defects of NDP policies.  But it’s clear to me now that these need to be made explicit.

I had never expected to win in the NDP leader’s riding this time around, but I did hope for a strong Green vote to pressure Jack Layton and the NDP to improve their climate change policies and address some of the priorities of Green voters.  That didn’t happen, so I need people who care about the Green Party, the thousands who told me that they were considering voting Green, to help put the pressure on the NDP to get it right.

It’s time to stop mincing words.  The stakes are simply far too high.     Read more »

Diversity bookmark, 2011 campaign

Adriana gave out these bookmarks at TTC subway stations during morning and afternoon rush hours in the third week of the campaign.

    Read more »