Thursday, October 15, 2009

A Dufferin-Caledon FLA Member Speaks Out

Yes, I'm still blogging about the ignoble end of Garth Turner's candidacy in Dufferin-Caledon. Why? Because people aren't playing by the rules, and it's pissing me off.


Today, I asked one of the board members of the Dufferin-Caledon Liberal Association for their take on the situation. Although they have identified themselves as one of the 'pro-Garth' camp, this person had already been involved in D-C riding politics long before Garth Turner showed up.

With that in mind, here are a few of the things they told me:

"The DCFLA Candidate Search Committee did due diligence in their search of over 25 viable candidate-prospects up here & Garth was the only one who emerged from that search willing to stand - the Report was accepted unanimously by the DCFLA in August & by LPCO thereafter. Consequently, there was no spectral 'other candidate' in the wings at that time. If one has come to the forefront in the last two weeks or so, then that is news to everyone I know!

As it happens, that spectral 'other candidate' emerged today in the pages of the Orangeville Citizen - Alton businessman Bill Prout. My contact knew nothing of this, but has informed me that this person has "no profile in the Association & will be hard-pressed to garner anything more than the paltry 8,000 votes won by Rebecca Finch in 2008."

"Ms. Rosenstock gave us the number of 170 in June/09 after consultation with an unknown LPCO official - I took that to be gospel, perhaps naively. At the time, the issue was exactly how many "Laurier Club" members we have in the Membership. Under such designation, the FLA is actually allowed multiple- memberships based on some arcane formula that LPCO has (ie.) 1 Laurier Club Member = 5 virtual memberships for the Riding Association. Ms.. Rosenstock has never clarified for us how many of these mulitple-memberships we indeed have: I believe it to be 4; she has argued that we have only 2."

Ms. Rosenstock is either confused or misinformed. The number 170 happens to be exactly 2% of the Liberal votes from the previous election, which is the threshold required for a riding with a sitting Liberal Member of Parliament. However as a riding with NO current Liberal MP, they would only be required to meet the one and a half percent membership threshold.

Also, there is no minimum required number of Laurier Club Members (those who donate the maximum in a given year). There is, however, a minimum number of Victory Club Members (those who donate $10 a month or more). That number is equivalent to 10% of the minimum membership requirement. However, a Laurier Club Member does count as 5 Victory Club members.

The rules are quite clear on this. All anyone had to do was look them up.

"At the August meeting of the DCFLA, we had representatives from LPCO, who assured the association that we were 'close enough' to the 170 (using the Laurier Club factoring) to request a Nomination meeting date, which we did by motion, for August 28th. At that time, it was ambiguous as to how many members we actually had, since Ms. Rosenstock could never remember clearly when asked & there was always a reason why she could not get a clear update from downtown. Nevertheless, we took the LPCO officials at their word & requested the meeting for the 28th."

This focus on the Laurier Club numbers makes me wonder if the real issue was the number of Victory Club members and not the total members. I've emailed the relevant person at LPCO for clarification.

"Amidst all the innuendo I see on the blogs & in the newspapers, let me try to be clear.... the association never would have been permitted to request a Nomination meeting by motion if we were not 'close enough' to meet the membership threshold...whatever the number was! We were encouraged to request this meeting (a) because electoral urgency permitted it (b) we understood that we had the blessing of LPCO by virtue of their two reps. sitting there & (c) we had a candidate green-lit, approved by the DCFLA Search Committee & ready to go!

"If there is a reason for the reluctance to grant us a Nomination meeting, then I do not know it. What I can say is that some people (Ms. Rosenstock & Jeff May) have been opposed to a Garth Turner candidacy in this riding, for whatever reasons they may have. Until recently, I have had no reason to suspect their motives, but when I read things they have said on Steven Janke's blog or in the local papers, I am led to be suspicious."

This might all seem to be nothing more than a petty internal squabble over an admittedly controversial local candidate. But I'll leave you with this thought for now:

If it should turn out that this riding association really did follow all the rules and meet all the requirements to select the candidate of their choice, what does it say about the application of those rules that they were still prevented from doing so?


  1. Sounds like Rosenstock needs to go. Doesn't seem to know the things that are her business to know.

  2. Much difficulty getting Echo to accept my blogger account...very frustrating!

    Same comment as I attempted to make yesterday...regardless of "thresholds" if the association (read: executive) were ready, willing and able to have a nomination meeting having at least one green lit candidate, but remained a few members below whatever "threshold" why did they not go out on their own and recruit the appropriate number of new members or more themselves?  Mme Rosenstock's title on the executive is, after all, Membership Recruitment, not Membership Secretary. 

    Technically, these thresholds are intended to assure prospective canddiates that there is a healthy, robust organization with a healthy and active membership to support whomever wins an additionally "new membership attracting" contest. 

    We seem to have our attitudes and onuses backwards.


  3. My contact on the board informed me that he had personally gone out and signed up 15 new members on Garth's behalf over the summer, so this accusation being floated by Rosenstock and now LPCO that nobody was signing up new members is nonsense.

    I am still trying to imagine how such an obvious error about the membership threshold came about, and I can only think of three possibilities:

    1) Ms. Rosenstock was deliberately lying, which I sincerely doubt,

    2) She was hopelessly confused by the rules and completely mis-interpreted what she was told, which would make her merely incompetant, or (and this is the most disturbing),

    3) She was deliberately misled by someone at LPCO who intentionally gave her the wrong information in order to ensure that a nomination meeting would never take place as long as Garth Turner was running.

    That might sound a little paranoid, but when you hang around Garth Turner long enough you learn to look over your shoulder.

  4. And sorry, I know - Echo still sucks.  If anyone can suggest a better comments system, please let me know.

  5. Garth just rubbed people the wrong way (his own fault).  IMO none of these problems would exist for another candidate.

    Re: comment system - what's wrong with the simple thing blogspot comes with? 

  6. Garth rubbed some people the wrong way, but IMHO he more than made up for it with the number of people he inspired to get politically engaged.  Like me.  And these sorts of shenanigans happen all the time in other ridings with other candidates - it's just that you only hear about it when it's somebody like Garth Turner.

    Re: comments - I switched from Blogger comments because someone was dropping turds in my comments section and I needed a more accurate way to identify them and ban their asses.  I went with Haloscan because that's what everyone else was using, but it turned out that they had just been acquired by JS-Kit.  Then shortly after I signed up, JS-Kit converted everything to something called Echo - and Echo SUUUCKS!!

  7. Someone in the D.C. Liberal Association was feeding information to Steve Janke to post on his blog about Garth.
    Insider information has been coming out of this association for the last few elections.That is why Tilson has had an easy ride.Its time for the Liberal Top Brass get there act togeather and kick the board of directors and Mr. May to a new planet. They call themselfs Liberal's .I call them dirt.

  8. I'm afraid it's up to the membership to kick these board members to the curb.  If it was my riding, I'd start organizing for the next AGM.

  9. <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="">Ontario Liberal Party </span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="">Adair has the best of both worlds. </span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="">Adair calling the shots in D.C.</span>
    <span style="font-family: Arial;"><span style=""></span></span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style=""><span style="">Riding Presidents<span style=""></span></span></span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="">Dufferin-Caledon</span><span style="">
    Dennis Adair 
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style=""></span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style=""><span style="">Dufferin-Caledon Federal Liberal Association</span></span><span style=""></span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style="">Dennis Adair, Vice President</span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style=""> </span>

  10. <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style=" ">Mr. May, who was once a nominee as the riding's Liberal candidate, withdrew his candidacy for personal reasons.</span><span style=" ">The association has not been without its internal disagreements.  Neil Orford, one of the association's directors, attempted to introduce a motion asking the executive board to endorse the Turner candidacy but Mr. Adair ruled the motion out of order. Endorsement "at this time is inappropriate. The association's responsibility now is to find potential candidates and run an open, fair and transparent nomination. </span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt; mso-layout-grid-align: none;"><span style=" ">Jeff May, who had filed his nomination papers to be the Liberal candidate for Dufferin- Caledon in the next federal election, has withdrawn his candidacy.</span>
    <p style="margin: 0in 0in 0pt;"><span style=""><span style=""> </span></span>

  11. And for the DCFLA, this may be a good thing. Federal politics in Caledon have now seen two candidates leave the Grits with complaints about party politicking.
    Former Candidate Rebecca Finch stepped away from the Liberal Party after her loss in the 2008 election, disillusioned with party politics.
    While Finch faced heavy criticism for that decision, it appears now that Turner will be kicking party doors down on his way out too.

  12. Time to clean the house up in D.C.before the next Election.

  13. Mr. Turner, for one reason or another, got a very raw deal. He's probably THE BEST natural communicator ANY PARTY has seen.  He will definitely be missed ... by anyone who cares about the QUALITY of governance.

  14. Trillium Party of CanadaOctober 16, 2009 at 11:19 AM


    You must stand up for Canada

    You MUST RUN in D.C.for anything.

    We got the money to give them a run.

    You have a team behind you.

    A new party is BORN Trillium Party of Canada

    We put a little bit of Liberal stuff a little bit of P.C. Stuff and little bit of Green Suff We mix it all up and Form The Trillium Party of Canada."By The People for The People of Canada"

    A new start in Canadian Politics.

    People of Canada have had enough of the Old Boys Clubs.

    If we build it they will follow.

  15. Trillium Party of CanadaOctober 16, 2009 at 11:28 AM

    EDMONTON — The Wildrose Alliance party could be Premier Ed Stelmach’s primary competition if an election was held today, according to a poll released Wednesday.

    If they can do it we can too.

  16. Trillium Party of CanadaOctober 16, 2009 at 11:31 AM

    The Wildrose Alliance claims it now has 11,670 members, up from 1,800 in June.
    Wild Rose, Wild Cheese, Wild Whatever.....I don't care.  This PC Stelmach government is a cancer, JUST GET RID OF IT and deal with the consequences later because right now WE ARE SINKING and the PC's aren't helping us.

  17. Concerned for democracy in CanadaOctober 30, 2009 at 1:23 PM

    Appropriate column in the O'ville Citizen regarding this issue:

    <span style=""><span>Bidding adieu to Garth Turner </span></span>
    <span>Dan Pelton </span>
    <!-- Page Number: 10-->One thing can be said about our dearly departed, wannabe Liberal MP Garth Turner. He certainly has a flourish for the grand exit ...