Kimball Cariou: Unlike major parties, Communist party calls for systemic change

    1 of 1 2 of 1

      This will be my third time on the ballot in Vancouver Kingsway, but I won’t be the winner on election night. People sometimes ask: “Why put in enormous amounts of time and energy for a few hundred votes?”

      It’s a good question.

      Running as a Communist candidate allows me to talk directly to thousands of voters about the need to defeat the most dangerous threat to social programs, democratic freedoms, the global climate, and the sovereignty of Canada. Yes, that would be the Harper Tories, who want to roll back every achievement won by working people over the past century. A Tory majority on May 2 would be a disaster for everyone but the rich, and the tiny band of fundamentalist bigots who seem to have the ear of Stephen “Bubble Boy” Harper.

      So why not just tell the voters of Vancouver Kingsway to support the NDP or the Liberals?

      Because on many crucial issues, the Communist party offers a unique perspective. Large numbers of people share our ideas, even if they end up voting for one of the “major” parties.

      Examples? How about this hot button topic: public ownership and control of the oil and gas industry. This isn’t some crackpot scheme of a tiny minority. Surveys reveal that well over one-third of Canadians support public ownership of energy resources. In many other countries, revenues from nationalized oil and gas contribute heavily to development and social programs. Why not Canada? Yet none of the major parties will even discuss this option.

      Nor will they talk about doubling the tax rate on corporate profits. Another wacky Communist platform plank? Hardly. This would merely return corporate taxes back to the levels of a decade ago.

      What about Afghanistan? Sadly, Jack Layton spends considerable time praising the “courage and sacrifice” of Canada’s troops, but he has stepped back from any sharp criticism of the “mission” which continues to kill Afghan civilians. In Vancouver Kingsway, voters can cast a ballot for a Communist who will demand the immediate return of Canadian troops.

      A related issue concerns “defence” spending. Surveys show that most Canadians want to redirect military spending to civilian needs. But while the NDP and the Liberals raise objections to the “process” and the costs of the F-35 fighter jets, neither will say bluntly that it is morally repugnant to purchase these deadly killing machines. Layton even promises to maintain and keep increasing Canada’s bloated $21 billion annual military budget.

      By voting for war against Libya, the NDP and the Liberals have lost any credibility as opponents of the Harper Tory military expansion plans. Only the Communist party calls for slashing the military budget by 75 percent and investing the savings in health care, schools, and social housing.

      Finally, only the Communist party addresses the elephant in our global living room. The destructive economic system of capitalism, based on the drive for maximum corporate profits, is a menace to human survival and to the environment. Time is running out for our planet. Only a change to a new system, one which puts humanity and nature ahead of profits, offers hope for our future. That system is socialism, and only the Communist party calls for such a change.

      If you agree that these ideas make sense, check out our website and contact us to help. Together, we can get off the treadmill of “politics as usual”. Voting Communist on May 2 is a good beginning!

      Kimball Cariou is the Communist Party of Canada candidate for Vancouver Kingsway.



      Taxpayers R Us

      Apr 12, 2011 at 11:56pm

      I come from a communist country. It looked great on paper, but when the few of us remaining added up the dead in our family, we moved to Canada, with the help of the Red Cross.


      Apr 13, 2011 at 8:09am

      Canada is not communist and will never be. And Mr. Cariou pretty much addresses this right off the bat--the word "communist" has a more negative connotation than "conservative" in the eyes of most North Americans.

      But all of that aside, it would be nice to have a party with some valuable insight. Of course, being a small party affords them this ability as they have not been overrun with corruption etc. I'd honestly vote for these policies just to see them have the chance of being addressed in parliament. However, I think I'll be casting my vote this time around in hopes to knock out Harper directly. Baby steps.


      Apr 13, 2011 at 8:18am

      The soviets forced my grandparents out of Russia because they did not believe the same thing. Fortunatly, I live in a country where I can tell you to shut the hell up.


      Apr 13, 2011 at 11:17am

      Are Ricky and Julian in the communist party too?

      On a more serious note, how sad is it that this is your only choice if you want to vote against the insane "humanitarian" war in Libya?


      Apr 13, 2011 at 11:57am

      communism as an idea had lots going for it; Communism as a political power was, and is, a disaster wherever it happens, for one simple reason: people who have never exercised real power tend to go nuts when they get it, lavishing themselves with every luxury they ever dreamed of and stomping on anyone who protests. Much as I can empathize with working class issues in this country and others, the truth is that Canada is largely a middle class nation with middle class ideas about government: big enough but not too big, democratic, and accountable at least every four years. Show me a Communist country that upholds those ideals. There isn't one, because the moment Communists get power, they shut down any threat that might prevent them from keeping it, meaning democracy as we know it. Oddly enough, that's our boy Steve Harper's plan too! So maybe Communists and Harperites aren't that far apart after all! Except for the nationalization of oil, of course. Trudeau's Liberals tried that, but then again, he was originally a Communists, wasn't he...oh, ya gotta love this country! Choose the middle way - vote NDP, the only party never in power that's done more for Canadians than everyone else combined.


      Apr 13, 2011 at 12:52pm

      re GOT

      Leaders going power-crazy is a problem in all forms of government. It's not the reason communism always fails so spectacularly. It's the lack of market pricing mechanisms, which creates the inevitable shortages of everything. (Basis of the old joke that if Russia had taken Afghanistan, there would have been an immediate shortage of sand)

      Without market pricing, producers have no way to figure out what to produce or how much to produce. There is absolutely no possible replacement for market pricing, which is why starvation is the result of removing it, 100% of the time.

      If the communists can figure out a way to manage production without the free market, in a way that doesn't create mass starvation, I'd love to hear it. Oh, and to the zeitgeisters out there; "we'll use a magic computer with magic algorithms we haven't written yet and can't explain" isn't a valid answer.

      In Soviet Russia...

      Apr 13, 2011 at 2:21pm

      Party find you!


      Apr 13, 2011 at 4:54pm

      I'm tired of people spouting the same old "good on paper, but look at Russia!" line. Actually read Marx and understand the history surrounding the global workers' movement. After you do that, come up with some modern and relevant criticism of the Communist Party, not some tripe cooked up by The Simpson's humourists or Reaganite propagandists. The Soviet Union is gone, the Cold War is over; criticize the modern Party, not its caricature.


      Apr 13, 2011 at 11:26pm


      100,000,000 dead can't be wrong.


      Apr 15, 2011 at 11:15am

      How can you criticize democratic Communism when it hasn't been tried? Free market Alan Greenspan capitalism led to the collapse of the global economy--but trillions of taxpayers money paid to top up the casino's chips. They are still running the same old laissez-faire system.