Saturday, March 25, 2006

The Return Of The Native

Liberals are gathering along Yonge Street with palm branches to hail the coming of their saviour as he makes his triumphal procession into the holy city of Toronto:

Michael Ignatieff will deliver what his strategists are calling a “vision speech” Thursday in Ottawa as a prelude to his formal announcement that he is running for the Liberal leadership.

The former Harvard professor and rookie Liberal MP is expected to outline his views on national unity, the economy and his controversial support of the war in Iraq in his speech on Canada and its role in the world to University of Ottawa political-science students.

The speech will be followed, either Friday or early the next week, by a formal announcement in his Toronto riding of Etobicoke-Lakeshore that he wants to succeed Paul Martin as leader of the Liberal Party.


The Liberal familiar with his views said that Mr. Ignatieff's approach to national unity is more of a “civic concept.”

“The role of the federal government isn't really any longer about federal-provincial jurisdictional squabbles or who's got the money. [It's about whether] Canadian freedom from coast to coast has the same quality and character.”

Expect plenty of high-sounding rhetoric laden with pseudo-academic phrases and concepts to cover over a complete lack of original thinking and uncritical acceptance of the Liberal Party status quo .

Despite Ignatieff's occasionally hawkish foreign policy talk and expressions of fiscal responsibility, do not expect him to announce anything new.

He's not expected to actually have new ideas, just the appearance thereof.

Since Pierre Trudeau will not rise from the grave, Michael Ignatieff will have to do as the next great philosopher-king.

Ignatieff will be the third declared candidate for the Liberal leadership, and also the third from the Toronto area. And many others will join him--Gerard Kennedy, Bob Rae, Joe Volpe, Maurizio Bevilacqua, Carolyn Bennett, Belinda Stronach, Ken Dryden.

From worldwide Liberal revolution, to Liberalism in one country, to Liberalism in one city.

Let as many Toronto Liberals clutter up the starting gates as possible. Nothing will be more harmful to the party's long-term prospects than the perception that is a Toronto party.

Source: Globe and Mail


davidson said...

despite the best efforts of part-time tory spin doctors to convince Canadians that the LPC is a Toronto only party, the truth remains the same. Progressive urban dwellers from Vancouver to Halifax elect Liberals. It seems to me that the lack of support for even the most watered down of Tory policies in urban centres is far more troublesome for Harper and his crew. It certainly keeps a majority out of reach. If the Tories can't strike now, they'll be banished from power for a decade.

Loyalist said...

How odd, then, that Conservative MPs have been elected in St. John's, Quebec City, Ottawa, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary, Regina and Saskatoon.

Apparently these are not urban centres.

primvs pilvs said...

"progressive urban dwellers" is just a another name for "self centered give me another government program twits"

CuriosityKilledTheCat said...

The article in the Globe & Mail is arrant nonsense. The journalist has taken pains to paint a picture which masquerades as a knowledgeable, incisive commentary on the political strengths of the two major parties. Unfortunately if is a trite analysis of the real story.

The truth is that the Harper win in January was an accidental win, brought on by a “perfect storm” which will not be repeated in the next election. Next time:

· the Liberals will have a leader who is not hobbled by the corruption charges so cleverly leveled by the New Tories.

· the Liberals will wage an intelligent, professional campaign, unlike the shambles in 2006.

· the pleas of Jack Layton to lend him votes will fall on deaf ears because he showed a remarkable lack of political sophistication in allowing Harper and the Bloc to sucker him into an election which was not due for a few months, with temporary gains for the NDP unlikely to last and not worth the mess of porridge he was paid for them.

· the New Tories will be unable to run the same stealth campaign they ran so successfully the last time, hiding their neocon candidates and tucking away into cupboards out of sight their neocon policies.

· Harper will be running on his record.

· the shallowness of the New Tory win will be shown, as voters decide to vote for a party which represents Canada, not one which wishes to secretly dismantle the Canada we now have.

· the Bloc will be fighting the New Tories tooth and nail, as they are now on notice that Harper wants to take seats from him.

Come election night in the next election, we will see the New Tories reduced to the opposition party again.

It will then be time for the New Tory party to look inward, and for Tories who have stood on the sidelines as the neocons took hold of the proud old Conservative Party, to reassert their rights, change leaders, and change policies to take the Reformed Tories back to the values which most Canadians share.

The prodigal party will return, and the election after that will be a humdinger, between two middle of the road parties. Both the Liberals and Tories will be duking it out for voters favour, and voters could then be equally well served by the reformed Tory or rejuvenated Liberal parties.