Meeting Minutes - Barry Kay: Politics of Policy Making - Aug. 9th. 2018
This meeting was held in the Trinity United Church sanctuary and began at 9:57 am chaired by President Martin Alderwick. There were 39 members in attendance with one visiting guest, Graham Ford, who is a member of the Guelph Wellington Men’s Club.
For openers, President Martin welcomed everyone and provided two funeral and a skinny-dipping joke.
Activities – Ray Biffis Night at the Races in Elora on September 24th, now open to members and spouses and additional guests up to a total of 40 people. [Sign up & pay by Sept. 20 meeting.]
Grand River Boat Cruise on September 19th now open to members and spouses and additional guests up to total of 60 people maximum. We do not have the minimum required number signed up yet. [Sign up & pay by August 23 meeting.]
Coffee Club – Andy Curtis The coffee club meets every other Thursday at 10:00 am at either the Boathouse or the Airpark Café. Everyone is welcome.
Julian Sale introduced Barry Kay as today’s presenter. Barry’s academic research has focused upon public opinion and elections, and of local interest, he has had some 270 articles published in the Kitchener Record. See the August newsletter for his bio.
Barry Kay on Public Opinion and Elections: The Politics of Policy-making Barry spoke extemporaneously about politics and policy-making in three general areas : changes in government, migration of people and tariffs.
Changes in government: Election of the PCs in Ontario was a natural event based on a need for change. It had nothing to do with leadership of the PC Party. Governments lose elections. There were 3 winners in the Ontario election: Greens elected their first MP in Ontario, NDP doubled their numbers, and the PCs won. Migration: Famine, natural disasters, economic and political failures are driving migration, with increasing numbers seeking refuge. This will only get worse with global warming. Canada is isolated and has not been affected as much as most other developed countries. There are places in Canada that need more people and where settlement costs are much lower than the big cities. While the inflow of refugees is changing the nature of Canada, it need not be a big political issue. Tarrifs: There are no winners in trade wars. However, Canada can not give in to bully tactics from the Trump administration. Similarly, Canada can not back off on supporting basic human rights in the spat with Saudi Arabia. The latter is minor and will likely be deescalated. If Trump survives this term, things will get worse before they improve. Trump will face impeachment.
Barry fielded a few questions : Yes, with 2/3 of respondents agreeing that the Liberals are not handling the refugee crisis well, this could be the central issue in the next Federal election. Social media will play a role.
Winning parties believe winning is public endorsement of their ideology, rather than expression of the need for change. Thus the on-going need for change.
Julian Sale thanked Barry for his presentation and him and gave him a token of appreciation from the Club.
John Proctor reported that member Gil Taves has been placed in the Elliott with dementia, and asked everyone to keep him in their thoughts.
Next Meeting – Thurs. August 23. Speaker to be announced.
Adjournment at 11:05am.
Recording Secretary: Gordon Framst for Kerry Gennings