The CBC has a breathless report tonight on top-secret merger talks between the Liberals and the New Democratic Party. They're talking platform. Leadership race. They even have a new name picked out: The Liberal Democrats. Cute.
I call bullshit.
Senior insiders with the federal Liberals and New Democrats have been holding secret talks about the possibility of merging their parties to form a new entity to take on the Conservatives, CBC News has learned.Just who are these "senior insiders" having these "secret talks?" Unknown. The two "insiders" quoted won't name names. Neither will I, at the moment. I think, though, that you don't need to be a strategic genius to connect the dots.
Many Liberal insiders confirmed that discussions between the two parties are not just focused on forming a coalition after an election or co-operation before one, but the creation of a new party.
The new party would possibly be named the Liberal Democrats and there has been tentative talk about what a shared platform would look like and an understanding that a race would be required to choose a new leader.
I highly doubt these secret talks have the blessing of the leader of the Liberal Party. (Aaron Wherry's sources dismiss the report. So do Paul Wells'. And mine, for that matter.) Look at the pretty dammed clear statement Michael Ignatieff made on Sunday: no pre-election coalition or cooperation, and for dammed sure no merger. Yes, only, to post-election cooperation. And I think he had to be dragged into making that statement. Are we really to believe he has authorized secret talks on merging at the same time? Come on.
Maybe some people in the party do believe a merger is the way to go. But I believe they're a minority, and I don't believe the people driving these stories are among them. They're taking advantage of them to advance their own agenda, not the party's. Because this has nothing to do with uniting the left or doing what needs to be done to defeat Stephen Harper's Conservatives, and everything to do with leadership politics and the personal ambitions of a few.
They're impatient. Ignatieff isn't getting it done. They think they know someone who can. They think they can. Maybe clocks are ticking. Young stars are coming up in the ranks, and if certain people don't get their shot now, before the young stars are ready, their window will close.
This is just a smokescreen, a means to an end: make Michael Ignatieff's leadership position untenable to clear the way for someone else. The latest Messiah to return the Liberal Party to the promised land. Because that, supposedly, is all it will ever take to restore the natural world order.
Sure, we'll tank the next election. But then, new leader! Valhalla! Small price to pay!
I've had it. I've had enough. I've had it with the petty games and the back-stabbing and the power-plays. We've been running on this same dammed hamster wheel of bullshit since the 1980s, so you think we'd get a freaking clue at some point. But I'm sure they're convinced no, I thought it was wrong when Chretien's people did it to Turner, or Martin's people to Chretien, or everyone's people to Stephane Dion, but me, ME, no I'm on the side of the angels! I'm the righteous one!
No. You're not. You're really not. You're just an asshole.
We have a leader. His name is Michael Ignatieff. And unlike some people, I stay loyal to our leader, whether he was my guy or not. And let's face facts. Had we finished a proper leadership race Ignatieff would have won it handily. Yes, he hasn't performed well. Frankly, he has disappointed me too. He has made mistakes. But he's showing signs of learning, of making the right decisions on where we need to go, and how we need to get there. But make no mistake: it's going to be a long road. And no leader can get us there alone.
The only way we're going to get there isn't through the Hail-Mary quick fix of a merger, or those that hope to exploit such talk because they think they, somehow, can do better, or just think it's their turn. We've been looking for easy answers for years now. THERE ARE NONE. If someone says there are, they're lying to you.
What it's going to take is long, hard work. What it's going to take is everyone on board, on the team, rowing in the same direction. And if you don't have the patience to do the hard work, or if you think your personal ambition is more important than the team, then I don't have time for you, because you are part of the problem.
Lead, follow, or get the hell out of the way.Recommend this Post on Progressive Bloggers