Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Cher Quebec,

Shorter Richard Gwyn in today's Toronto Star: Sorry, Quebecers need not apply.

Longer take: At least Richard acknowledges the contradictions in his thesis at the end of his column: It's quite crazy. But it's wholly Canadian. And what is that thesis? OK, hang on here.

First of all, he said being from Quebec is a handicap for Dion (I prefer to see him as differentially-abled myself) because Canadians are tired of all those Quebec PMs…he's one Quebecer too many is how Gwyn put it. Poppycock.

But we'll get to that in a moment, because there's more. He goes on to say Canadians are also tired of Quebec issues dominating the national debate. I'll agree with Richard on that. And he goes on to rightly point out Dion hasn't been obsessing over Quebec issues, Steve Harper has. Dion has been environment and global warming, Harper fiscal imbalance and open federalism.

Despite this fact though, Gwyn says because of the Quebec fatigue people will punish Dion, and I guess support Harper, even though it's Harper talking about Quebec issues and not Dion, because Dion is from Quebec.

Outside of Quebec, what Canadians want to hear being discussed is stuff like global warming. Instead, they keep hearing Charest talk about Ottawa and Harper talk about Quebec.

And who do they get mad about because of this? Dion, of course, because, even when he talks about global warming, he does so in a difficult-to-decipher Quebec accent.
Richard seems to have an exceedingly low opinion of the intelligence of Canadians. Sorry Richard, but we're not near as dumb as you seem to think.

First of all, let's dispense with this being a Quebecer is a handicap nonsense, as we heard that often enough during the leadership campaign. Most Canadians could give a flying-you know what where a party leader is from.

They're NOT going to vote for him because he's French? Maybe a very small percentage of people would cast their ballots along such, shall we say, racially-motivated lines; they'd likely never vote Liberal anyway and I'm fine not having their support. The vast majority of Canadians are concerned about policy, ideas, experience and competence, not ethnicity.

Secondly, as I said, Gwyn's opinion of the naivety of Canadians is off base. I think they're perfectly capable of deciding who is talking about the issues that are important to them and voting appropriately.

I'll freely admit Stephane has some challenges to overcome, but his place of birth is not one of them.

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WC aka Joe Calgary said...

Scott Reid might have a different opinion than you do BCer...

That is one of the Liberals problems, many of the party elite do consider Canadians dumb.

Popcorn anyone?

Anonymous said...

wc aka Joe Calgary - I read his info on his blogsite - not very mature to say the least.

I hope he has considered the kids who have parents who are drug abuser, alcoholics or both - who would rather buy their fix than help with their kids - there are out there.

Beer and popcorn dads are out there and their kids get neglected. Just go to any honky tonk on a weekend, especially when the welfare cheques come in. That real life and reality.

It's those kids who suffer.

Antonio said...


what do you think of the tangible actions the Liberals took on the environment?

Can the party pin all their election hopes on that?

You are correct. After being the point-man for denial on open federalism for 7 or 8 years, he now no longer speaks about the topic, much to the dismay of many in his home province.

WC aka Joe Calgary said...

A retort from an anonymous donor... which is to say no retort whatsoever.

How bout' we feed the 1.2 million little darlings first, then worry about where their parents are going to park them.

I don't know where you live bud... but I don't see the majority of parents running for their next fix.

Unless it's at the grocery store.

A BCer in Toronto said...

Antonio, I think we're veering off the topic a bit here (the dumbassitude of Richard Gwyn) but on your question I thought, as simplistic as it was, Michael was right when he said we didn't get it done.

For a lot of the time budget cutting trumped everything. Afterward, I think there was a battle in cabinet between the pro-enviro group led by David Anderson and the pro-development group led by Herb Daliwhal. Chretien didn't care to get involved much either way and not a lot substantial happened imo.

When Dion came into enviro he had a little more support than David had, but I think Paul was still too concerned with losing (what little) support we had in Alberta to go too far. Nonetheless, he made some progress, had some good plans in place and was starting to make some progress when the government fell.

So, that's the record, such as it is, in my view. Here's my positive spin. What were we lacking before? Executive commitment. Without buyin and leadership from the top, no real environmental change will happen. With Dion as PM, calling the shots, we will get it done.

Spin mode off, I'm not counsellings us to pin our election hopes on that. In fact, I've regularly counseled the opposite: broaden the message.

Miles Lunn said...

I think being from Quebec might be a liability in the West, but not so much in Ontario. If anything being from Alberta is more of a liablity in Ontario than being from Quebec so I think where Stephen Harper comes from hurts him more than Dion.

Quite frankly I could really care less where our leader comes from. As long as they have a national, not a regional perspective. That being said they need a diverse team with people from all parts of the country and when choosing the cabinet, location needs to be considered (as all governments do, I should note and I am sure Dion will do).