27 Mar 2014

Guest Blog By Murray Dobbin

From Nick Fillmore: This week I am re-printing a "must read" column by Murray Dobbin, a leading journalist and social activist for the past 40 years. This excellent article gets to the bottom of what the NDP needs to do to be an effective, progressive force in this country.

Here's a Big Idea:
Transform Capitalism

By Murray Dobbin
The notion of 'big ideas' periodically raises its head in Canadian politics and I recently criticized the NDP for
Murray Dobbin
taking a good idea -- a national day of action -- and wasting it on, well, small ideas. Specifically I suggested that the party's focus on excessive interest rates and other charges effectively redefined citizens as consumers, something that Stephen Harper's Conservatives have been doing for eight years.

In response to the criticism, the party's deputy leader Megan Leslie wrote a response, claiming that the NDP had big ideas "in spades" and that she was proud of them. It is unusual for the NDP to engage its critics on the left outside the party and it is a positive sign -- as are days of actions and national town halls. Engaging people outside the four-week period of elections is critical to the NDP's future success.