Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Walk The Walk





It was reported in the media the other day, that the number of Liberals signed up for the Victory Fund is about 1000. A few weeks ago, I was told by a reliable source that the number was 1200, so let's use that as accurate. I admit, the more I think about this figure, the more it frankly pisses me off.

Does that figure include all 307 Liberal candidates from the last election? I mean, if you want to run for the party, surely to christ, you've signed up for the most basic of party support. Does that figure include all 308 riding presidents, because how could anyone head a riding and not sign on to this intiative? What about all those ex-officos, riding executives, Senators, former and current party bigwigs, plus all the lesser lights, are they all on board? What about all us bloggers and commentators, all these members of facebook groups for Liberal 308, Grassroots Liberals, etc, who rail daily against the evil Harper, surely we're all on board with the VF, right? Calling all deadbeat Liberals.

Some quick math, 1200 VF members works out to be FOUR Liberals PER riding. That's right, a woeful FOUR, you've got to be kidding me. Now, I do realize there are many ways to contribute to the party (good on those that do), but FOUR per riding is just so astoundingly lame, it boggles my mind.

Put up or shut up, pull out the wallet or put a sock it, don't bitch about Harper, when you can't dish out a minimum of $2.50 a month. We Liberals need to start walking the walk, because our collective apathy and paper tiger rhetoric is effectively hobbling our party, our impotence disallows our strongest position. Surely, we can do much, much better than the current participation, and if we can't, well then, we deserve our fate.

21 comments:

Anonymous said...

I agree! If said "senior liberals" want that title they should cough up some dough.
I would hope that many of the individuals you mentionned are already Laurier Club members.
Perhaps someone with some time on their hands should publish a list of WHICH MPs, Senators, candidates, ex-officios are indeed donors. This is all public info but may not be summarized for all to clearly see :)

Anonymous said...

All donors are publicly listed via the elections Canada website.

Steve V said...

anon

I can't find the link, but I remember reading somewhere that many MP's and other party figures hadn't contributed as much as you would expect.

It's entirely correct to remember that some members are in the Laurier Club, some give in other ways, etc, but it's still a dreadful total for VF. I just know, there are a lot of people blowing nothing but hot air here, the numbers don't lie.

Maybe the rollout hasn't been acceptable, but surely each riding can sign up more people, especially when half the money goes to said riding.

lisa said...

I thought it would have higher! :(

here's the link to search the contributor database:

http://www.elections.ca/scripts/webpep/fin2/select_search_option.aspx

Jennifer Smith said...

I must admit that, even though I was out almost every day volunteering at the campaign office during the election and doing a lot of other stuff, I didn't actually sign up for the Victory Fund until the day after the Coalition was formed and I realize that the party would need funds to counter the Conservative ad campaign (I also donated a decent lump sum at the same time).

I don't know why I waited so long. Partly because my income is pretty low, plus I guess I figured I contribute in other ways.

Susan said...

The Victory Fund is a mess because it doesn't allow you to just donate to the federal party; it takes part of it for the local riding. I tried to figure out how to just donate federally and ended up doing it to the Laurier Club. There is no simple way that I found to just send in a donation. I've made this comment to every MP etc. who e-mails me stuff and so far not a single answer.

Steve V said...

Jennifer

Sorry for the guilt trip :) It's not like VF has been around for that long, and there are other ways to contribute, which you clearly do. I just think that figure is pretty low, and maybe we need a better outreach, like a riding by riding drive or something else to make people aware.

Steve V said...

Susan

Is that true? I did the half/half contribution, but if you go to the link, it looks like you can select the Fed option exclusively if you want, or am I wrong?

catherine said...

Susan, not sure what you are referring to. I give money separately to the federal party and to my riding association, both by going to the main liberal party website.

I know others who belong to the Laurier Club, which excludes you from donating to the Victory Fund, because you are already maxed out on federal party donations. A friend has asked the Liberal Party to create an option for Laurier Club members to be able to designate an amount to the riding association simultaneously, because now it requires two separate donations. No action on that yet.

Yes, the numbers are pitiful, but one should add the Laurier Club to the Victory Club numbers, since one cannot do both. The sum is still pitiful though.

The riding associations should really be challenged on signing up Victory Club members.

John E. Morse said...

I am not a Liberal party member, nor have I ever been one. I did however make the largest political donation of my life during the illegal election of 2008. I had no problem making this donation to the fedaral party by simply phoning the number on the
Liberal website. The lady was very polite and thanked me for my contribution. Unfortunately this is where the chain of communication ended . I haven't been contacted ever since and even had to phone to get a lawn sign. As I would assume that a donation would put me on a database somewhere, it amazes me that no one has been trying to get me to join. I think the resources that are available to the party fundraisers are not being utilized in an efficient manner.

John Laforet said...

A number of candidates and riding presidents would be more likely to be members of the old chequemate program that gave 100% of the monthly contribution to the local association.

It would be difficult for those who are members of chequemate and active at the riding level to only give half of what they currently do to their local association as the primary focus of all associations is building a strong enough local campaign to win that riding.

I am one who opted to keep 100% of my monthly contribution local for that reason.

Hamish said...

Steve, as national co-chair of the Victory Fund, thanks for this post. In 6 months, we now have over 1700 proud donors. The Victory Fund is steadily gaining more members who are willing to give a regular monthly donation to their party.

To Jennifer Smith: Thank you for joining! To Susan: Thank you for joining the Laurier Club!!!

The Victory Fund was created specifically with the split donation between the national office and a riding association. We need both to be strong. Steve, though technically possible on the web site, simply donating to one and not the other is not joining the Victory Fund. A minimum of $5 must be donated monthly to both. But feel free to increase your donation to the riding or party side if you wish!

Of note for Catherine, I am a Laurier Club member. I established a monthly donation to my riding association (via the web site). Now, because i'm regularly donating to both, i am a Victory Fund member. There is no exclusion and we're doing what your friend has asked.

We continue to create a web of Victory Fund Champions throughout the party and we will have a VF Chair in each riding. The Victory Fund must be part of our DNA as a party.

Rob Jamieson
LPC National Membership Secretary

Anonymous said...

Steve
You're right I remember a journalist doing an article showing donations made by MPs to the parties.
It's high time an update be published and add the names of the Senators and staffers.
If you drink at the trough its not unreasonable to put a bit back into the system.

catherine said...

Rob, thanks for your response. I just checked the Victory Fund website and see that you can designate both. I'll let my friend know.

Perhaps a note on the Laurier Club donation page (about the possibility of simultaneously joining the Victory Fund) would help clear up lingering confusion about how these two interface.

Steve V said...

Rob

Thanks very much for the comment, and good to hear the numbers are steadily improving. I was told 1200 a few weeks ago, so I assume that means pretty good membership since :) Great news too about a VF chair for each riding.

Does anyone know how many Laurier Club members there are?

Anonymous said...

I'll considering donating once I feel a sense of grassroots respect return to this party. Until then, I will protest the lack of it by not contributing money.

Dame said...

I Upped Up my contribution to the Liberal Party a few Times during the last 8 months or so some will Go once only some as monthly contribution... None of it is to the Victory Found..Is that any different??? I hope all goes all To the same account..

Anonymous said...

Steve - Good post. You're absolutely right. I just signed up a second ago after taking the link from your blog.

Steve V said...

anon

That's the copout spirit. You want to change the party, get on board, that's how it happens. It's like the person who doesn't vote, bitching about the government.

anon

Good stuff.

Anonymous said...

Hi Steve:

I've heard one of the most connected and powerful people in my local area say that donated time is what he gives to the party he claims to love. With local leadership like that . . .

Anyway, I signed up last May.

Thanks for tweaking people's consciences.

Anonymous said...

Its the executive like Murphy and Mckinnon etc...that are running this party that are the dorks....five times I emailed them to tell them it was all over the gossip poor that Dion and the liberal were cutting that 200 month to little poor people and not once did they put out an ad to conteract this bad press...including dion...they ignored it.