Weekend political conventions dominate the News from Nowhere

Well, this past weekend was a big one of political conventions here in North America — but before I talk about Canada’s Conservatives or Liberals I want to talk about the USA’s Libertarians.

The Libertarians held their convention in some hotel in Orlando, and unfortunately they looked every bit like a fringe group. I watched some of the proceedings on C-SPAN in between sporting events on TV. It was entertaining, but not in a good way. Quite honestly, it seemed like a lot of the delegates in there were lunatics. These folks were just way, way, way too into politics, there is no other way to describe them. The proceedings went on and on; the convention was full of “point of order” this and “point of information” that. It is amazing they got anything done. It surely was an unimpressive performance, and really bad television.

How these delegates were still able to do the right thing and nominate Gary Johnson for President, and his choice William Weld for Vice-President, is beyond me, but they managed. Even so, it took these foolish delegates two ballots to make their minds up. It should have been all over on the first for both of them. At least there weren’t any fights breaking out in the hall — unlike at Donald Trump’s rallies.

Johnson (pictured), for those who don’t know, was formerly Governor of New Mexico, and Weld was Governor of Massachusetts. After they were nominated, I noticed a lot of whining on social media from these true-Libertarians decrying the “sellout” of their principles and the “sellout” of their party to the Republicans. In reality, though, these two are more of a fit for the Libertarians given their views, which have been out of step with the social conservatives in the GOP for years. And the fact is there is a whack of “liberty” GOP supporters who are upset and in need of a new home, at least for this election cycle.

This ticket is surely going to produce the best election result the Libertarians have ever had — better than what that party deserves, frankly. These two are more experienced and, yes, more stable than what you will find on this year’s GOP ticket led by that wild man Trump. So yes, I’m impressed with their picks, but in general still unimpressed by the party. A lot of those delegates don’t know a good thing when they see it.

Meanwhile there are still a few #NeverTrump social conservatives still trying to decide what to do. I read some blurb about how William Kristol was teasing on Twitter that some well-known conservative was about to enter the race for President as an Independent. And Trump responded his usual way by calling Kristol a “dummy.” We’ll see. If an independent Conservative joins the race for President, I say bring it on. I’ll really enjoy seeing Trump’s reaction to that news, if it happens.

On to the Canadian conventions, and I am surprised that the Liberals (in Winnipeg) and Conservatives (in Vancouver) scheduled their gatherings on exactly the same weekend. They sort of cancelled each other out, publicity-wise. 

But on the positive side, both conventions were a heck of a lot more successful than the shambles that the NDP put on earlier this year in Edmonton, where they voted for the LEAP Manifesto and then also stabbed leader Tom Mulcair in the back. That was political suicide at its finest. But enough about the NDP.

I would say the Conservatives convention went very smoothly. Not only was there a classy farewell to Stephen Harper on the first night, but they also voted to change their constitution to get rid of their policy opposing same-sex marriage. 

Interestingly, I noticed most of the Saskatchewan delegation voted to keep the policy! That doesn’t surprise me, though, because the Saskatchewan wing of the party is hopelessly full of social conservatives and family-values people. Anyway, that was interesting.

I also notice a lot of prospective leadership candidates were campaigning and had their hospitality suites going, and that Kevin O’Leary had officially joined the party. Gee, I almost wish I was there.

I wasn’t really tuned in to what the Liberals were doing, their convention seemed boring in comparison. I guess the big news was that Bob Rae made a gagging reflex when a tribute was paid to Stephen Harper by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. I actually find that kind of funny.

That is all for the moment.