Day: September 2, 2008

Tory majority in Canada?

According to the poll, conducted by the Strategic Counsel, 37 per cent of Canadians would opt to vote for the Tories were an election to be held today, compared with 29 per cent for the Liberals, 17 per cent for the NDP and 9 per cent for the Green Party. Tory majority? Pollster takes your questions.

The interesting fact is that Centre-Left parties (Libs NDP + Green) are much more popular than the Tories, so while the country prefers left of centre politics, there is a lot of vote splitting going on. Need to learn a bit more about that, eh! If this were India, the NDP and Liberals would be running a united ticket.

Canadian Elections October 14th?

Prime Minister Stephen Harper will later this week ask Governor General Michaƫlle Jean to set Oct. 14 as the date for the next federal election, senior government officials said Monday.Harper will visit Jean at Rideau Hall, her official residence in Ottawa, to establish the election date, the officials told the Canadian Press, speaking on condition of anonymity.The prime minister will declare that, after having met with all three opposition leaders over the last few days, he no longer has the confidence of Parliament, the sources said. As per tradition, it will then be up to Jean to decide whether to dissolve Parliament and set the election date.

Harper to ask GG to set Oct. 14 as election date: sources

Just like most things Canadian, our elections will also be about 2 weeks before the American one, it’s Harper vs. Dion, also starring the NDP, the Bloc Quebecois and the Green Party. Climate Change will be front and centre, thanks to Dion and the Liberals’ Green Shift campaign:

Our plan is as powerful as it is simple. We will cut taxes on those things we all want more of such as income, investment and innovation, and we will shift those taxes to what we all want less of: pollution, greenhouse gas emissions and waste.

Energy costs are soaring all over the world. While energy prices continue to rise, we need to encourage energy efficiency. We need to change wasteful habits. We need to discourage polluting activities.

In other words, a kind of Carbon Tax similar to the one the BC provincial government instituted this July. Of course, Harper called this a tax increase and has forecast gloom and doom for all Canadians if something like this happens. As such, his attacks have been successful and support seems to be dropping.

It’s going to be very interesting and very tight, with the Tories and Liberals both polling in the Mid 30s. Expect yet another coalition government. The Greens could affect results in certain ridings, always good to follow. I hope to learn a lot about Canadian politics from watching this election. The system is quite like India’s and as such, is easily understandable.

Also expect no soap operas, this is Canada, folks, if you were expecting the Jerry Springer feel to this weekend’s goings on South of the border!!

Mr Bata, R.I.P

Thomas Bata, the patriarch of one of the world’s largest family-owned business empires, died in a Toronto hospital Monday. He was 93.Bata, who fled to Canada ahead of the Nazi invasion of his native Czechoslovakia in 1939, ran the shoe-manufacturing company that bears his family name out of its Toronto headquarters for more than four decades overseeing its growth into a multinational organization that serves more than a million customers a day.

Bata shoe empire magnate dies in Toronto
Thomas Bata inherited his father's shoe company in 1932. This man’s shoe company store was the place of pilgrimage every year for new school shoes and/or sneakers. I did not know he lived here, and ran his business out of Toronto. Bata was one of earliest brands I can remember, they were the only shoe in town when I was growing up. Bata’s brand has been overtaken on the cool factor points by the Nikes and Adidases of the world. But the last time I was in Chennai, I did find time to go to a Bata and buy a pair of sandals. The shopping experience was out of my childhood, the dusty no airconditioned store, the salespeople hanging around doing nothing much, chaos of unorganized shoes. There were some differences, they actually had a sale section! Anyway, when I was standing in line waiting to pay for the sandals, the guy sho sold them to me asked me if I could fill out a survey, and if I could please, if I didn’t mind, write in the comments section that the store needed air conditioning?? I sure did, because I was there 20 minutes in March, he was going to be there 10 hours a day through the summer.

Anyway, that was my last experience at a Bata’s. His stores are still the place to go for millions of people in small town India and even in the big cities. The stores could use a little bit of sprucing up (and some air conditioning), but the brand is still very strong.