Sunday, October 08, 2006

Stephane on QP

Stephane Dion was interviewed by Jane Taber on CTV’s Question Period this afternoon, and in my extremely-biased opinion I thought he did pretty darn well. I’d invite anyone that still harbours some doubt about his English skills to watch the video and judge for yourself.

Taber also asked him about the English issue in the interview:

"I think I have a clear way to express myself. I mean, I make mistakes but usually what I've said is not ambiguous, it's clear," he said.

"I think (the criticism) is mostly by people who have never heard me speak. When they say, for instance, I have no charisma; most of these people never saw me deliver a speech. But my strength is to reach the people. Each time when I've been able to meet the people, our members, anywhere in Canada, I left with more support than when I came, and that's the way to grow."

I will raise one point out of fairness. Both Taber and the accompanying news story said Dion is in third place. I wish it were so, and he very nearly is, but in fact he is in fourth place, although just a scant .2 per cent behind Gerard Kennedy. There’s still polls to report though, so you never know...

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Steve V said...

I thought Dion did a great job. I hope our individual "bias" doesn't preclude us from acknowledging the other candidate's strong attributes. Dion is genuine, thoughtful and honorable.

wilson said...

'Dion is genuine, thoughtful and honorable.'
Add Dryden and Martha with these charactoristics, too.
If the Liberals were truly looking for renewal, these 3 would be top of the list.

But the Liberals are, as usual, looking for the win. A quick fix via a new face.
hmmmmm like Stockwell Day was supposed to be for the Alliance.

Kevrichard said...

I've heard him speak in person and thought his english was great, he'll just have some minor errors here and there like most french canadians do ( instead of saying retired, it sometimes comes out as sounding like retarded for French speakers.... I've witnessed Dion and my dad do it too its hilarious ). As for any question of him lacking charisma, my perception of him is that he speaks very passionatly about his ideas and that hes a strong willed person.

Anonymous said...

first the media ignores kennedy, then the media lies about his placing.

I bet if gerard wins this thing, the MSM will still be saying Dion Rae and Ignatieff are most likely to.

Anonymous said...

I know and understand your bias, but really. Dion spoke like a man on the campaign trail with his usual rhetoric. He didn't really answer questions - he just repeated his when I'm prime minister stuff.

Also, NOW sustainable economy is suddenly his main issue? What about the environment. I thought Dion was a more honest man than that and I was truly disappointed. Sad that he went that direction instead of staying firmly on his message about the environment.

Steve V said...

I thought the sustainable economy was interwined with his environmental stance. How is that off message?

Karen said...

It's not Steve. Only those who have followed the leadership race, through their own myopic lens focused squarely on their candidate, make such leaps.

Dion has never said, (to my knowledge), that he based his entire platform on his environmental plank. I think people have jumped to that conclusion, incorrectly, because of his position in the Martin gov't.

He states his position quite clearly, here.

Anonymous said...

Well, prior to being on Question Period, CTV - Dion carried around his little green book with him. That would make one think that was his main focus - seems it's changed.

Prbably due to the scathing report from the Environment Commissioner - according to the neo-cons and NDP.

I heard her speak in an interview and she said the Liberals had some good working policies starting to take hold. She said the Conservatives had nothing yet - quite the spin the NDP and neo-cons are putting on this report.

Steve V said...


Dion's environmental approach is tied to economic sustainability isn't it? I'm not speaking to whether or not Dion is a single-issue candidate, just that he ties the economy to the environment.

Jeff said...

Dion has always tied his environmental policy to sustanability and sustainable development. The two are fundamentally entwined. Nor is that his entire platform, that's laughable.

Nothing has changed. But our anonymous friend knows this. He/she just thinks that by posting anonymous smears on blogs he/she's taking part in a righteous crusade that will turn the tide in favour of his/her candidate.

It's amusing, in a sad and pathetic kind of way.

Karen said...

Dion's environmental approach is tied to economic sustainability isn't it?

Absolutely it is, Steve. Sorry, I guess I did not phrase my reply properly. It was really directed at Anon, who btw seems to be posting this same line at every blog that mentions Dion.

It simply drives me crazy when people either knowingly spread mis-information, or do not take the time to actually learn the facts.

Karen said...

Pathetic is apt, Jeff.

Karen said...

Jeff, I don't know if you're interested, but Dion is going to be on CFRB tomorrow, on the John Moore show. It is available @ and runs between 3:00 and 6:00pm. I don't know what time he'll be on though.

If you're interested, I'll see if I can get the time.

Anonymous said...

Pathetic? Hardly. He ran around with his little green book under his arm until the scathing report came out. He talked about his environment plan in every intereview until the report came out. He didn't talk environment to Jane Taber. I don't blame him for trying to put the focus elsewhere because he knows too well what the Tories and NDP will do to him.

I just thought it was too obvious and he should maybe have combined the two in his interview.

I have trouble understanding him but did notice that if talked a little "slower" he is more understandable - perhaps someone should pass that on to him. It's hard I know because French is a much faster language. He needs to slow down a little.

I know he's a nice guy and all but he just doesn't have much of a persona and I'm concerned about his link to Chretien and the thugs. This takes away renewal - sorry but it's true.

Dr. Tux said...

I think this goes to the heart of what people are missing about Dion. I first became a supporter of Dion when I saw the language he was using regarding the environment. His statements about wanting to be a leader who could help reconcile people and the planet were far stronger than anything I had been used to hearing from a politician. In fact, it verges on the spiritual proclamations of people such as Matthew Fox, Wendell Berry, Thomas Berry and others. It, in fact, is very similar to the calls we've been hearing from indigenous peoples of North America and such writers as Marie Battiste and Winona Laduke.

Dion then made his approach to this reconciliation clear by saying that he wanted to reconcile the economy and the environment. This, by the way, goes far beyond a call for sustainable development. It starts the ball rolling on something called ecological economics which has been put forward by such visionary thinkers as Paul Hawken, Amory Lovins, E.F. Schumacher and others.

Unfortunately, though the call for reconciliation is by far the strongest language I've ever heard from a politician about the environment anywhere, its implications aren't well understood by many. It isn't political language that perks peoples ears up. What people usually hear from politicians is a call for sustainable development. There's a fundamental difference in the meaning between "reconciling humans with nature" and "lowering our harm". I don't see that many get that.

So in a long winded way, nothing has changed about about Dion's policies. And thank God for that.

Anonymous said...

Here's a quote from Dion, Mid-September: "If we want to be the party of the future and not only the party of the past I am convinced we need to tackle the issue of the century and the issue of the century will be to reconcile our way of life with the true capacity of the planet."

Who can argue with that?