Like many, I didn’t watch the August 6th Macleans leaders debate – because, you now, summer. But I did catch some of the followup coverage. It made me wish that there was a fifth candidate onstage and that this would be her/his opening statement…
I have a question to ask all the people not watching this debate at home: What kind of monster starts an election campaign on an early August long weekend?
In one fell swoop it shows bad judgment, contempt for Canadians, and shocking ambivalence to the finer things in life – like, say, warm weather in a wintery country.
And besides, who looks south to the corrupt, expensive, hyper-partisan, and perpetual electioneering of the US and says, yeah, let’s bring that type of circus up here?
Maybe it’s someone who is informed – or rather not informed – by data, like the pulse offered by the long-form census – axed. Or by insights, like those uncovered by scientists researching infrastructure, the environment, health, and social issues – muzzled. Or by experience, like that of our municipal, police, military, and aboriginal leaders – ignored, except for photo ops.
It may be the poor judgment of someone who, in this digital age, would rather invest in secretive government surveillance than economy-driving invention and innovation. Who’d rather take isolating hardline foreign policy positions than develop Canada’s unique honest broker role as a middle power. Or who talks a mean game when it comes to accountability for criminals and terrorists but not for Senators or himself.
We can discuss a range of issues here tonight and in every single one, he has proven to be a loser. I’m not saying that he’s not smart or persuasive or even a decent Christmastime musician (can we debate that instead?). I’m saying that he’s wrong and stubborn and after almost a decade, his policies have proven out to be duds at best, destructive at worst. When energy sector leaders bemoan his environmental policy, when veterans and commanders sneer at his cabinet selections, and when fiscal conservatives go quiet on his economic performance, you know it’s time for a change.
Honestly, vote for any of my other colleagues here: the Greens, the Liberals, the NDP, indies, or any others. We may have differing ideas – not a bad thing, you know – but at least these leaders and most of their teams are well-meaning people, passionate about building a better Canada. Not just a deeper partisan war chest for crappy attack ads.
We have a head of state who shortly after taking office looked at the government stationery and had it changed from “The Government of Canada” to “The Harper Government”. That’s not the move of a responsible, democratically-elected leader. It’s the move of an egotistical wannabe-dictator. The kind of person who blocks reporters, berates free-thinkers via Calandra-Poilievres, and prorogues parliament at his whim.
Just like 24 Sussex, which he’d rather let crumble around him than repair and preserve for future generations, is not his house, The Government is not his government. It’s ours. Let him play golf with Duffy and the Fords. It’s time to clean house of his lackeys and restore the stationery in the PMO.
That’s really the only thing worth raising at this point. We can debate the issues in the fall closer to election day.
In the meantime, it’s summer. Go away!
*walks offstage and leaves the building*