You'd think that a union leader would know something about negotiations, but with the advice Buzz Hargrove is giving Jack Layton you really have to wonder.
The situation right now is that Jack Layton has Paul Martin in a pretty good position. Martin would like to avoid an election, and Layton can (almost) make it happen. It's not true that Layton can "name his price", but within reason he can get what he wants. This is the best position the NDP has been in during my lifetime.
Then along comes Buzz Hargrove who says Layton shouldn't risk an election because this is as good as it gets. He's against calling an election because there is too much good that the NDP can do now. He goes on to say: "For us, the best our party can hope for is another minority situation, but we already have that, so what's the advantage of holding an election?"
Gee Buzz, that's really smart. The only advantage Layton has over the Martin administration is the threat of defeating the government. If you announce you aren't willing to do that, what do you have? Nothing!
It doesn't matter if what Hargrove says is true. The truth isn't often a good negotiation strategy. What would have happened to the autoworkers if Hargrove went around saying, "we can't afford to go on strike because we have no money saved up"?