trthomas commented on the blog post Canada’s Left Wing New Democratic Party Surges in Polls; Is Electoral Reform Near?
Hmm, the Canadian NDP is somewhere between Marx and Keynes. To paraphrase a former NDP party leader, “Capitalism is allowed, if it behaves.”
A few others have already mentioned how political parties are financed, but I’ll add, election spending is capped, and closely monitored by the agency.
I don’t think anyone’s mentioned the NDP’s been around since the sixties, so it’s hardly new, anymore. But, the socialists back then had little marketing skills, so the name stuck.
As for the Canadian parliamentary system, we have two houses (Commons and Senate), and a head of state (King/Queen of England), but only the lower house has any actual power.
The leader of the party with the most seats in the commons forms the government through the cabinet. Unless it’s a minority government, whereupon two parties with a higher number of seats can form a coalition government.
The Supreme Court and the Senators are appointed by the Governor-General (who is the representative of the Queen for Canada). However, the Governor General defers to the cabinet (not by law, though, but by tradition).
The NDP proposes the abolishment of the senate, and possibly the governor-general.
A few other notes about the Canadian government: there’s a five year period between being a member of government, and joining a lobbying agency (although there are loopholes); the Prime Minister has near dictatorial powers, although the majority of them have tended to defer to their cabinet; and there are actually three levels of government: federal, provincial, and the Indian Act.