Haythornthwaite joins ballot

He’s not late to the party, if you ask Cowichan-Malahat-Langford’s newest federal candidate Alastair Haythornthwaite.

Make it five.

He’s not late to the party, if you ask Cowichan-Malahat-Langford’s newest federal candidate Alastair Haythornthwaite.

He says he’s right on time.

“The cutoff date for nominates is still 21 days from the voting day,” the Marxist-Leninist Party representative explained Wednesday, shortly after announcing his candidacy. “Though admittedly I didn’t know I was going to be in the election until recently, but the campaign is being extended rather ridiculously.”

Haythornthwaite joins 70 other Marxist-Leninist candidates across the country, running on an anti-war platform.

“I’m very, very concerned about the wars that we’re involved in on the other side of the world and the Marxists-Leninist platform is for an anti-war government to stop fighting aggressive wars on the other side of the planet and to come out of NATO and NORAD and all the alliances that go into those conflicts,” he said.

The longtime Cowichan Valley resident is a father of five and grandfather of five and worked as a journeyman machinist for 35 years. In 2006, he was elected by his peers to the position of business representative in the International Association of Machinists and Aerospace Workers, a role he held for nine years. He also has a BA in labour studies and has been active in the Nanaimo Duncan and District Labour Council since 1984.

“For me, the policies and programs of the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada match my opposition to adventurist wars which bring such misery to the innocent. I share the aspiration for a nation where the needs of the working people take priority,” he said.

A lifelong communist and trade unionist, Haythornthwaite is the founder and chair of the Joseph Mairs Memorial Committee which holds an annual political event in Ladysmith to honour Joseph Mairs, a Vancouver Island martyr of the working class who died in prison after being jailed for his participation in The Great Coal Strike of 1912-1914.

Haythornthwaite’s next goal is to bring democracy back to Canada.

“There’s been a real deficit in democracy in Canada in that the decisions are made by the monopolies and not the people being affected,” he said. “We can look at the pipeline debates and fracking and then stuff that’s just jammed down people’s throats in the interest of foreign corporations so, again, the Marxist-Leninists don’t believe that’s appropriate for a modern democratic country.”

The Marxist-Leninists want a new direction for the country that upholds public rights over monopoly rights. The group aims to end paying the rich and immediately to increase funding for social programs, too.

“We need to rework our constitution to eliminate the colonialism that’s still in it and make a modern democratic where everyone is a citizen and they have full rights,” he said.

First Nations relations are also on his agenda.

“I think we also have to, with the native communities, they have to be recognized as independent nations and negotiated in that way rather than the very paternal colonial circumstance we’ve had for the last couple of hundred years,” he said.

To reach Haythornthwaite directly email alastair1952@shaw.ca or phone 250-748-3274.

Visit mlpc.ca to learn more about the Marxist-Leninist Party of Canada’s platform.