Thursday, April 24, 2014 - (47109 comments)

Nanos-IRPP Survey - 1 of 2 say Canada on right track - down 16 points - unsure up

53 comments Latest by Lex Llewdor

Nik on the Numbers

Our annual Nanos-IRPP Mood of Canada survey finds Canadians more uncertain about where we’re headed - and more critical of the Harper government.

A significant and rising percentage of Canadians are uncertain about whether the country remains headed in the right direction, up from 9 to 25 percent over the past year, according to our annual Mood of Canada survey. The data shows that the percentage of Canadians who say the country is on the right track has fallen to 48 percent, down markedly from 64 percent who were confident with the direction a year ago.

Although 48 percent right track numbers should still be considered good, it is the lowest level recorded in the survey since Stephen Harper became prime minister in 2006.

Canadians are divided on the performance of the Harper government but negative assessments have risen over the past 12 months. The number of those who rated the Conservative Government’s performance as “very” or “somewhat” poor jumped eight points, to 33 percent. Performance ratings were stronger for the Conservatives in the Prairies and among male voters and weaker among women and east of the Ottawa River.

“The last election resulted in the Ottawa River being the new political dividing line,” says Nik Nanos of Nanos Research. “On many of the issues, this political asymmetry has mirrored the asymmetry in the Canadian economy between the resource propelled economy in the West and the manufacturing economy in central Canada. Nanos has conducted the tracking survey in partnership with the Institute for Research on Public Policy for the past six years.


Between November 28th and 29th, 2012, Nanos Research conducted a random representative online survey of 1,000 Canadians 18 years and older.

Results for 2011 are from a random telephone survey of 1,202 Canadians conducted between October 20th and 24th, 2011. A random telephone survey of 1,202 Canadians is accurate plus or minus 2.8 percentage points, 19 times out of 20.

Would you say that Canada as a country is moving in the right direction or the wrong direction?

Canada (n=1,000)

(The numbers in parentheses denote the change from October 24th, 2011 (n=1,202)).

Right direction: 47.9% (-15.6)
Wrong direction: 26.9% (-1.0)
Unsure: 25.1% (+16.6)

Would you describe the performance of the current Federal Conservative Government led by Prime Minister Stephen Harper as very good, somewhat good, average, somewhat poor or very poor?

Canada (n=1,000)

Very good: 9.3% (-4.1)
Somewhat good: 24.2% (-2.6)
Average: 28.2% (-3.9)
Somewhat poor: 16.9% (+4.1)
Very poor: 16.2% (+4.7)
Unsure: 5.1% (+1.7)

On a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 is not improved and 5 is improved, how would you rate the relationship between the federal government and the provincial governments over the past year?

Canada (n=1,000)

Improved (5): 4.6% (-1.0)
Somewhat improved (4): 15.8% (+3.3)
Neutral (3): 35.5% (-7.0)
Somewhat not improved (2): 20.6% (+5.5)
Not improved (1): 13.4% (-1.3)
Unsure: 10.2% (+0.6)

On a scale of 1 to 5, where 1 is not improved and 5 is improved, how would you rate Canada’s reputation around the world over the past year?

Canada (n=1,000)

Improved (5): 18.6% (-0.1)
Somewhat improved (4): 25.7% (-4.3)
Neutral (3): 28.9% (+1.9)
Somewhat not improved (2): 13.9% (+3.2)
Not improved (1): 8.2% (-2.9)
Unsure: 4.7% (+2.2)

Any use of the poll should identify the source as the latest “Nanos/IRPP Mood of Canada Survey”.

Get the new free Nanos iPhone app at



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The mood of this Canadian has not changed in respect to the politics of Canada since 2006.
Our political, economic and social situation has been gradually going downhill or backward since Harper became PM. I don`t see any improvement in the coming year
To answer the questions:
!. Wrong direction
2. very poor
3. 1
4. 1

[updated Fri Jan 04 17:37:41 -0500 2013]

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04 Jan 17:37

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What It Should Be All About.

Friday's working meeting with the Prime Minister is now history and so is the ceremonial encounter with the Governor General. It ain't quite like putting lipstick on a pig -- but the best that can be said is that progress has been made with the willingness of the Government of Canada to engage in active and more substantive talks with First Nations.

It seems to me that if only one thing was made clear at those meetings, it's that First Nations leadership has a choice: it can either stand united going forward, or fall into division, which will accomplish precisely nothing.

That's my message for the Assembly of First Nations and the Idle No More leadership. I hope this will lead to increased co-operation between the AFN and INM. They don't have to love each other -- what they have to do is whatever is necessary to improve the lives of their people, especially those of young people from their various communities.

It's one thing for AFN chiefs to have almost unanimous agreement on the road ahead. Ditto for INM leaders but it's quite another to blend that diversity of opinion into a solid and enduring common cause.

Call it a sacred mission, if you will. But remember, this is a ball that can never be dropped. Stand together and negotiate from a position of strength with the Harper Government. Hear the clarion call of First Nations' destiny -- and then make it happen.

[updated Sun Jan 13 03:59:25 -0500 2013]

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13 Jan 03:59

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If Nowhere Near Lincoln Can He Perhaps Be Lincolnesque?

Just had a read of Jeffrey Simpson's column in The Globe and Mail. Picture our Prime Minister along with a substantial representation of caucus apparently out for a night at the movies! To dwell on such an event is to enjoy a moment of endless delight.

I would remind this Prime Minister though Abraham Lincoln abolished slavery -- that was not the main accomplishment of the Civil War. Preserving the Union was.

Stephen Harper should perhaps meditate and clue in to the significance of that. If this is indeed his last term as PM, he should be thinking about signature items. A political legacy is never an easy thing to achieve but normally, contemplation starts about now.

I happen not to believe for a second that Harper will be leaving politics anytime soon but I actually have been known to be proven wrong!

Surely, a prime ministerial swan song is bound to be stitched together with something other than endless and seemingly relatively meaningless free trade agreements. As the old saw goes: is that all she wrote?

Or, in the lyrics of Peggy Lee: Is That All There Is?

[updated Sat Jan 19 02:13:45 -0500 2013]

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19 Jan 02:13

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What is the number one problem for the Liberals in their leadership race, they do not have any worthy candidates including Justin Trudeau the son of Mr Finger. I do not support Idle No More, I want Counter Protesters to rise up against the Natives - Indians, Chief Porky Spence and here boyfriend are a fraud. This is latest in my world, Unions get to see applications of all miners, HD Mining must be booted out of BC, preparing to give Christy Clark and band of useless politicians the boot, new municipal auditor must start with the City of Vancouver with forensic auditors, when you Vote, vote conservative at any level federal, provincial and municipal the only ones that can do it right

A message from the west, where the power is, because we do not need you!

[updated Sat Jan 19 04:40:57 -0500 2013]

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19 Jan 04:40

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A Prime Minister's Dilemma.

Now they've done it, the PMO has made it crystal clear that the Governor General will play absolutely no role in future policy discussions between the Government of Canada and the Assembly of First Nations. From a constitutional perspective, it seems the Prime Minister could not be on firmer ground. That was my interpretation as well, hence my reluctance in making the GG's attendance a sine qua non for future meetings.

However, is this really turning into a case of not being able to see the forest for the trees? I think so. A battle of wits related to goodwill and good intentions is one thing -- a battle of wills is quite another -- something this PM has been known to have plenty of, in reserve.

Put another way, how do you ultimately square this circle? I don't see Harper budging and in his present political position -- one of internal division, I don't see Atleo making much headway either. And forget Spence. She has so backed herself into a corner, there is no way she can credibly reverse course now.

So, in the final analysis, all we've got is a lot of nothing. I pray that I'm wrong but I can't possibly see how things can move forward from here. Deadlock and impasse are my prescriptions for the future. Is there anyone who can move this process beyond the stage of political rhetoric? I can't think of a single person now that the damage has been seemingly irretrievably done.

[updated Tue Jan 22 21:02:54 -0500 2013]

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22 Jan 21:02

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Pour Chantal.

Bravo! Merci, mille fois.

[updated Fri Jan 25 20:05:38 -0500 2013]

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25 Jan 20:05

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That Queasy Feeling...

From the moment the French went in to help the Mali government, I've had nothing but a sinking feeling in my stomach. My sense of it is that the French are doing all the heavy lifting -- I doubt the pan-African force (ECOWAS) is going to win much territory from the rebels.

No wonder the Harper government is sticking with a limited response -- our aircraft's mission has been extended until February 15th, according to Defence Minister Peter MacKay.

I hope we know where we are going with this. When I think of Iraq -- not to mention Afghanistan -- and the continued bombings and killings all these years after the initial military missions, I have to wonder whether the slippery slope will inevitably set us on that same path.

[updated Tue Jan 29 01:20:39 -0500 2013]

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29 Jan 01:20

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I Thought To Myself Last Night.

Ron, I wondered, how can you best describe the insurgency going on in Mali and the necessity for intervention by French and other foreign forces.

Suddenly, as if in a flash, it came to me: a crock of shit waiting to happen.

Best to avoid -- at all costs -- said crock I concluded.

[updated Thu Jan 31 20:08:42 -0500 2013]

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31 Jan 20:08

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For Those Of You Wondering When The Real Thomas Mulcair Will Stand Up...

Well, he just did. And may God Bless him! You see folks, you have to clue in as to who Tom Mulcair is -- he isn't a physical representation of English Canada. He isn't an unconditional federalist. He's a man who is a product of Quebec, who is representative of his province, people and times.

Mulcair epitomizes the broad federalist-sovereignist consensus that exists in Quebec for decades. Naturally, I stand with him.

It's no accident that I'm writing about the NDP private member's bill aimed at repealing the Clarity Act -- the day after going to see Lincoln at the theatre. Because when you come right down to it, Lincoln is what you get if you attempt to interfere with or obstruct the democratic expression of the Quebec people in a hypothetical but perhaps future referendum.

Canada has a choice: she can pledge to keep Quebec in, at any cost, or she can negotiate. At best, the point is moot because quite frankly it would take nothing short of a miracle for the Parti Québécois to win a referendum in a second mandate. You know it, I know it and Pauline knows it.

The Clarity Act is English Canada's security blanket -- you remember English Canada, the nation that has not moved one inch in thirty years to accommodate Quebecers quasi-federalist aspirations. Not one Prime Minister -- or government politician of any consequence has had the courage to make it right -- to get Quebec's signature on the constitution.

So let's get down to brass tacks. Whether we keep Clarity on the books or repeal it is basically irrelevant. The day Quebec becomes sovereign, if it ever happens (as unlikely as that is) is the day 50% + 1 of Quebecers vote for it. To deny the logical outcome of such a political expression will be to stoke the fires of civil war in Quebec.

The Supreme Court of Canada has left clear majority undefined. That is not merely coincidence. The court was sending a message to the politicians that it is for them to determine what level of support constitutes and acceptable outcome for Quebec to secede from the federation. Put another way, it puts the Prime Minister of the day in an extremely uncomfortable position with but two unpleasant alternatives: either resort to force of arms to keep Quebec in -- or let her go. My choice is the latter.

However, to concentrate on the inside baseball of the Clarity Act is to fail to see the big picture. Our job as federalists and proud Canadians is to reinforce the federation -- to further cement Quebecers attachment to Canada. And that can only be done by pen rather than sword.

Quebec gets that. The rest of the country -- not so much.

[updated Mon Feb 04 01:45:10 -0500 2013]

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04 Feb 01:45

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The Senate: Think The Patriation Reference.

The Harper government has asked the Supreme Court of Canada to render a decision on six reference questions related to the Senate and the provisions contained in The Senate Reform Act.

I would tend to argue that this is the right move to make. Quebec is already fighting the federal government's bill in the courts and other provinces are perhaps likely to consult their Courts of Appeal.

My sense of it is that The Patriation Reference shows us the way -- Ottawa has the power to unilaterally proceed but convention requires unspecified provincial consent. In Trudeau's day, it was thought unwise to proceed with only New Brunswick and Ontario, at least initially, formally on board.

This Prime Minister has a far larger stable of provinces in his corner. He could force it through tomorrow but that would be both politically inconvenient -- not to say messy. So, as he waits for cover -- constitutional or otherwise from the Court, the political skirmishes are likely to continue.

Personally, I'm thinking six to seven provinces. If Harper can get them, my money will be on his government's ability to proceed by way of The Senate Reform Act.

[updated Tue Feb 05 21:15:58 -0500 2013]

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05 Feb 21:15

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