The NDP Doesn't Get It

So it appears that the NDP has collectively sorted through the debris of last year's election and come to the conclusion that the reason why they lost is that they were not radical enough.

And this, folks, is the root of why the NDP isn't going to get anywhere federally any time soon.

We can forgive the fact that they confused "anger at the Bloq" with "national relevance". We can hand wave the fact that they brilliantly exploited the political and media vacuum left by the Liberal wreckage.

The problem is that the NDP doesn't seem to understand that in order to be nationally relevant, they need the mainstream vote.

Nonsense like the LEAP Manifesto doesn't help either. All it does is paint the entire party as a group of economy-wrecking, job-killing, tax-hiking know-nothings. And especially in the political environment where "long term planning" means Tuesday, it gives the impression that an NDP government would immediately seal the oil fields, quadruple the price of gas, and tax anything with petroleum in it.

None of the so-called blue-collar middle class is going to vote for killing their jobs, and that's who the heartland of Alberta is populated by.

When you put it all together, all this does is bleed good ideas. If the NDP comes up with an idea that is crazy, it just re-enforces the perception that they don't know what the public wants. If they come up with something that is politically palatable, then one of the other two parties -- probably the Liberals -- will adopt it, meaning that the idea can get implemented without the assorted other wackyness that a NDP government would undoubtedly want to proceed with. As a result, even if the country keeps moving left, the NDP will still get pushed left of mainstream as the Liberals adopt their good, actionable ideas.

If you want power, you have to be appealing to the people. Being more radical isn't going to help.