Thursday, April 30, 2009

(Video) The Man tries to keep Liberal bloggers down, and talking party reform with Rocco

With apologies to the S-Club, there ain't no party like a Liblogs party. A Liblogs party does quit though, but only when hotel security shuts down at 11:30pm last night. Surely a record. But we Liberal bloggers are used to being put down by The Man, whether its hotel management or the Conservative government.

While it lasted though it was a great party, very well attended and well lubricated thanks to Cherniak's decision, over my objections, to favour quantity over quality during our trip to the liqour store. They were out of Lucky, but we did clean them out of Old Milwaukee. The room was packed and the air conditioning insufficient to the task at hand. Good Party.

Thursday is the Council of Presidents with the convention proper getting underway Friday, but we still had a lot of delegates and local Liberals on hand, as well as fellow bloggers Steve of Far and Wide, Karen of Liberal Arts and Minds, Jim Calder of Progressive Right. Jim Curran of What Do I Know Grit also came out to “drink Cherniak's beer.”



I said hello briefly to incoming president Alf Apps, and had a chance to have a conversation with national director Rocco Rossi, who is very tall in person. Seriously my neck was straining. Rocco was buoyant about the quarterly fundraising numbers the party released Wednesday. The party doubled the amount it raised in Q1 09 vs Q1 08, raising $1,831, 843 compared to $846,000 a year ago. I'm also told that doesn't include another $1 million we did in April, so Q2 is off to a good start to. It's just a start though, we'll still trail the Conservatives. But it's an impressive turnaround.

I also spoke with Rocco about a 308 riding strategy, and asked where he sees the PTAs in that. He indicated he wants to upload administrative tasks and, rather than maintain PTA offices, devote those resources to hiring field workers to work with the ridings. He worked it out to one fieldworker per 6-8 ridings. I like the idea of fieldworkers to work more directly with ridings, but I feel strongly any successful 308-riding strategy can't be run from Ottawa – it needs the direction and guidance of local PTAs.

I pitched him my idea of giving riding associations a percentage of the Elections Canada per vote subsidy, as a way of both giving more resources to ridings to organize as well as incent no-luck ridings to work harder and grow their vote. Every vote gained means another $1.80 in the coffers, so its a virtuous cycle.

Rocco raised a point I hadn't considered: just give them the money and ridings could become insular and stagnant. I'm not totally sure I agree, but he did raise an interesting alternative: why not incent ridings on the percentage bump, compensate them on the increase between their last two elections. Similar idea, it's something I'll consider.
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Also, a shout-out to James Morton, a fellow blogger and candidate for deputy chair of the council of presidents. His party was also shut down, about 30 minutes after the Liblogs bash.

Vancouver just can't handle us Liberals, it would seem!

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4 comments:

penlan said...

The video won't work. Says it's private & we have to accept a receipt from the sender if we wish to view it.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Opps. Is it working now?

penlan said...

Yes, it's working now! Thanks.

Robert McClelland said...

A Liblogs party does quit though, but only when hotel security shuts down at 11:30pm last night...While it lasted though it was a great party, very well attended and well lubricated thanks to Cherniak's decision, over my objections, to favour quantity over quality during our trip to the liqour store. They were out of Lucky, but we did clean them out of Old Milwaukee.You do realize it's likely that one of the Blogging Whories is going to spin this as news that a party of drunken liberal supporters was shut down, don't you? I'm betting it will be Janke doing the deed and it will then be transmitted over to the Disgrace.