Decade of Decline, Part 1.2: The Declining Number of Active EDAs

Since 2007, the Green Party of Canada has experienced an ongoing decline in the number of active EDAs (riding associations), and an erosion of the party’s core of long-established EDAs.

(This post is the second part of Decade of Decline, my report detailing the collapse of grassroots support for the Green Party of Canada. The remaining parts will be published on this blog over the next few weeks. For a table of contents, please see the Introduction.)

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A week before the GPC convention, a poll puts them at 10%. What’s the real story?

An article published September 21st on ipolitics.ca carried the headline More Canadians than ever support Green Party. Reporting on an EKOS poll, the article quoted pollster Frank Graves as saying the party was “doing as well as they ever have”, with support “around 10 points”, and then stating “If there was an election tomorrow, they’d probably win a handful of seats.”

This would appear to be positive news for GPC supporters heading into the party’s national convention next weekend. The reality, however, is less inspiring.

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“Emperor Max” is No Solution

In a National Post column published August 31, Maxime Bernier lays out his reasons for leaving the Conservatives and forming his own federal party. Urging Canadians to learn about public choice theory, Bernier claims that Canadian politics has been hijacked by interest groups, whose lobbying has “corrupted” both the Conservative and Liberal parties.

Bernier’s stated goal is nothing less than “systematically reversing the dynamic described by public choice theory”.

But what new approach does Bernier propose to help his party accomplish this task?

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Decade of Decline, Part 1.1: The Collapse of Local Contributions

Since 2007, the Green Party of Canada has experienced a severe decrease in contributions to its EDAs (riding associations), with the losses now totaling more than 80% of both dollars and contributors. The trend has remained negative through 2017.

(This post is the first part of Decade of Decline, my report detailing the collapse of grassroots support for the Green Party of Canada. The remaining parts will be published on this blog over the next few weeks. For a table of contents, please see the Introduction.)

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Decade of Decline: The Collapse of Green Party Grassroots Support, 2008-2017

Decade of Decline is my report on the deep and long-running decline in local support for the Green Party of Canada. The decline began in 2008 (with some early warning signs in 2006-2007), and has continued relentlessly since then. As of 2017-18, the party’s local support is at its lowest level in 15 years.

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Green Party Vote Result Mirrors Partisan Ballot Comments

In an earlier post, I reported that the Green Party of Canada had taken the unusual measure of adding partisan commentary directly on its ballots for this year’s pre-convention voting.

The pre-convention vote has now been tallied, and the results closely match the partisan ballot comments. How should this be interpreted?

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Signs Your Organization is Authoritarian (Part 1: Deflecting Criticism)

Authoritarianism isn’t always obvious. Sometimes, it infects an organization slowly, progressing for years before members realize (or admit) what has happened.

If you’ve ever had a gut feeling that something just isn’t right with your organization’s leadership, think back to the last time a member criticized the organization. How did the leaders respond? Did they use any of the words or phrases below?

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Efficiency and the Road-Trip Economy

Whenever people talk about economic policies, the subject of efficiency is guaranteed to come up.

People are constantly concerned about efficiency, and being perceived as “inefficient” or “wasteful” can be a deadly blow to a politician or a policy idea.

In this environment, it’s easy to start thinking that efficiency itself is the purpose of the economy. But not only is efficiency not the purpose of the economy, it’s not even one of the purposes.

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Why ballot box commentary cannot work

This is a follow-up to my report yesterday that the Green Party of Canada has added partisan messaging to their ballots for this year’s convention. It’s not necessary to read that post first, but it provides a real-world example of this phenomenon, if you would like to see one.

For anybody who has even briefly observed the differences between democratic and authoritarian states, it should be obvious that democracies try to keep their voting processes strictly non-partisan, while authoritarian states typically do the opposite.

But just in case it’s not obvious why ballot box commentary is a terrible idea for any organization, this post explains the problems.

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Green Party of Canada Includes Partisan Comments on Internal Ballots

(Update August 22: For a follow-up comparing the outcome of the vote to the ballot comments, see Green Party vote result mirrors partisan ballot comments.)

(Update June 21: For a follow-up post explaining in detail the problems with ballot-box commentary, see Why ballot box commentary cannot work.)

Today I received some surprising news from friends of mine within the Green Party of Canada (GPC), showing evidence of vote-influencing in the GPC’s internal policy process. These events add weight to recent claims by members that the party is abandoning its tradition of grassroots democracy and shifting to a top-down system of control.

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