Friday, September 21, 2007

Liberals Add Wheat Board Director

Not a bad coup for the Liberals:
Saying he is frustrated by the Conservative government "attack" on the Canadian Wheat Board, a board director plans to represent the Liberals in the next federal election.

Rod Flaman, an Edenwold area farmer, was to be acclaimed Thursday night as the federal Liberal candidate for Regina-Qu'Appelle.

Flaman, a farmer-elected director with the Canadian Wheat Board, said the Conservative government's attempt to dismantle the board's monopoly on barley sales is one of the main reasons he is entering the federal political fray.

Flaman was himself once a vocal opponent of the Canadian Wheat Board's monopoly on wheat and barley exports. He was among a number of farmers who protested the single-desk system of selling in the 1990s, when the federal Liberals were in office.

But after being elected as a Canadian Wheat Board director in 2000, he came to call the wheat board a success story.

The Liberals finished a respectable third in this riding(23 %) in 2006 and Flaman would appear to have an interesting perspective on the entire barley debate. Throw in the new equalization formula, and the Liberals might just be onto something.

11 comments:

wilson said...

'He was among a number of farmers who protested the single-desk system of selling in the 1990s, when the federal Liberals were in office.
But after being elected as a Canadian Wheat Board director in 2000, he came to call the wheat board a success story.'

He will make a good Liberal.

Steve V said...

Yes, he has shown the capacity to grow and learn :)

blog's socks said...

Let's force the Wheat Board on Ontario farmers like they are on farmers out west and see what the response will be. Perhaps Ontario farmers could be locked in jail like an Alberta farmer was a few years ago for selling his crop directly to the U.S. instead of through the board.

How about an even playing field for all Canadian farmers? Or are Liberals that opposed to choice?

Anonymous said...

They key coup here for the Libs is that he is an ELECTED wheat board director, not one of the appointed ones.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps Ontario farmers could be locked in jail like an Alberta farmer was a few years ago for selling his crop directly to the U.S. instead of through the board.

False.

Let's force the Wheat Board on Ontario farmers like they are on farmers out west and see what the response will be.

Ontario has a provincial farm board.

How about an even playing field for all Canadian farmers? Or are Liberals that opposed to choice?

Cargill monopoly is not choice. Ask American farmers how much they love "choice".

Steve V said...

"Let's force the Wheat Board on Ontario farmers like they are on farmers out west and see what the response will be."

You ignorant fools are a bore. Try ELECTING people that support an open market and you might have a point. There are mechanisms in play, and the last vote, farmers overwhelming put in pro wheat board members. You have a problem with democracy, or is it just easier to play the "poor west" card?

Miles Lunn said...

Interesting choice although this riding does include a large chunk of urban parts which could go NDP splitting the vote, never mind most of the rural vote today is not farmers, but people living in small towns and these people often tend to be white, older, religious, and conservative. Now thats not to say a surprise couldn't happen here, but it will be a tough fight to say for sure.

As for changing his views on the Wheat Board, I don't see anything wrong with that. People's views due change as they find out more on the facts or as their situation changes. I've changed my views on some things. I only have a problem when people change them for self-interest. If he changed them simply because he liked the perks of being a Wheat Board director, then I would question it, but if he changed it due to finding out more information, then fine by me.

However, I do think the fact that the Wheat Board applies in the West, but not Ontario is not an issue we should ignore. As someone from BC, with family from Alberta, I am aware of how strong Western Alienation is, so I think we should at least give a good reason here as some in the West, rightly or wrongly see this just as another example of Eastern politicians treating Westerners as second class citizens. I am not saying this is the case, but it isn't without reason when you consider things such as the National Energy Program and some of the comments some politicans have made about the West, specifically Alberta. If there hadn't been other cases of Eastern politicians appearing to slight the West, the argument will fall flat on its face.

Steve V said...

miles

I've lived out west too, and IMHO this issue has nothing to do with Ontario. What's best for the western farmers? Apparently, they support the system.

To give another example, Alberta dropped out of the national agency that regulates supply management on hatching eggs. Other jurisdictions remain, from their perspective the system works. If CWB farmers want out, it's all right there, 50 plus 1, basic democracy. Western alienation is just the easy bitching point.

Anonymous said...

Farmers should be free to support the CWB if they choose, or sell their grain somewhere else if they choose - that's not so hard to understand.

Perhaps your labour should be owned by a government monopoly? - they'll set your wage and take a little of the top for themselves.

that is all.

Miles Lunn said...

Steve V - You certainly have a valid point. I just think it is important to remember the Western Alienation issue does gain a fair bit of reasonance. On the case of supply management, I didn't realize that. My understanding was supply management was nation wide, although each province plays a role in setting the quotas and runs the marketing boards.

Steve V said...

"Farmers should be free to support the CWB if they choose, or sell their grain somewhere else if they choose - that's not so hard to understand."

Start electing people who agree, and you might actually have a point, beyond your superficial monopoly blatherings.