The new Liberal party leader Justin Trudeau has demonstrated he’s as ineffective and maladroit as were Stéphane Dion and Michael Ignatieff when it comes to making public comments at the wrong time and place.
Russ Campbell’s Blog: Federal Grits Learning the Difference Between Being Involved and Being Committed
I think we are all familiar with the breakfast dish: bacon and eggs, and with the chicken’s involvement and the pig’s commitment to the popular dish. So too must the federal Liberals be agonizing over the involvement level of their so-called registered supporters versus the commitment of their party members.
The recent federal Leadership debate reminded me of how fickle politicians are regarding their values and policies. All nine contenders seemed so anxious to tell us how much each favoured free trade. As someone who watched the Jean Chrétien Liberals in opposition during the Brian Mulroney-era debates over continental free trade, I couldn’t help cringing.
The government, at least as represented by our citizenship minister, Jason Kenney, wants to rescind Canadian citizenship for those holding dual citizenship, if they engage in an act of terrorism like the recent attacks in Bulgaria and Algeria. …
Tim Hudak, the leader of the Ontario Progressive Conservatives, suggests we take a look at privatizing liquor sales and gambling in Ontario. So, is this just another political bait and switch scheme or does he really intend to follow through and incorporate this into a future Tory election platform? …more here, Russ Campbell’s Blog: Privatize Liquor Sales and Gambling a Tory Bait and Switch?
The mayor of London, Ontario and former federal Liberal cabinet minister, Joe Fontana, has been charged with fraud by the RCMP. …more here, Russ Campbell’s Blog: Former Federal Liberal Cabinet Minister Joe Fontana Charged With Fraud.
Iheard this morning that the federal Grits are faring better in at least one poll, and at the expense of the New Democrats. The survey by Abacus Data is interesting in that the NDP has a relatively new leader while the Liberals’ long-term leadership is very much in question. …more here, Russ Campbell’s Blog: Liberals’ Latest ‘Renewal’ Set to Start Wednesday.
When thinking of Canada, I strongly doubt that the first thing to pop into most people’s heads would be “bastion of political conservatism”. Yet in this liberal country, prime minister Stephen Harper has carved out an impressive reputation as one of the world’s most successful centre-right leaders.
Through two minority Tory governments (2006 and 2008), and since May 2011 at the head of a majority government, Harper has balanced strong leadership with a confident domestic and foreign policy agenda. Canada may be a middle power, but our prime minister will accept nothing less than a seat at the top table.
This has been aided in large part by well-received political and economic policies. Harper’s unwavering stance in support of Israel, passionate defence of democracy and fierce opposition to global terrorism has won international praise. He has no fear of gradually reducing the size of government and the bureaucracy, cutting bloated social programmes and bringing down income tax rates. Meanwhile, the Canadian economy is in relatively good shape as compared to the US and Europe.
So, what is Harper’s secret of conservative success in a liberal society? What lessons can he teach David Cameron, the US Republicans and other centre-right Western leaders about maintaining their convictions and still winning elections?
Maybe I can shed some light. I’ve known Harper since 1996. Although we weren’t close friends, we met every so often and used to keep in fairly regular contact. We discussed everything from Canadian politics to, believe it or not, traditional Christmas music. I also worked in the Prime Minister’s Office as one of his speechwriters during the first minority government.
Harper is a highly intelligent, well-read, and astute political thinker. He’s a great admirer of past conservative leaders like Ronald Reagan, Sir Winston Churchill and Margaret Thatcher. He holds a master’s degree in economics from the University of Calgary, and is always engaged when it comes to Canada’s financial health and future success. Harper understands campaigning, having first won a federal seat in 1993, and enjoys the subtle art of strategic warfare during an election. He’s also a conviction politician: doing what he feels is right, no matter the personal cost in terms of popular opinion and support.
The one thing most politicians and political pundits seem to have in common is a penchant for hypocrisy. Take as an example the reaction to Premier Dalton McGuinty’s proroguing of the Ontario legislature. …more here,
Russ Campbell’s Blog: What Goes Around Comes Around.
The self-styled “arch-Liberal attack dog” Warren Kinsella has a new book out, Fight the Right: A Manual for Surviving the Coming Conservative Apocalypse. It’s no home run, but I’d rate it a solid triple. …more here, Russ Campbell’s Blog: Kinsella’s Fight the Right, a Sharply Hit Triple.