Is This The Face Of An Honest Man? Would You Buy A Used Car From This Guy?
Well it’s finally over and what a finish it was. We were fortunate enough to witness Canadian history being made as Justin Trudeau came from ‘nowhere’ to become Prime Minister of this great land in virtually three weeks. There are so many other stories to tell but, for me, a couple that will never be told or even recognized for what they truly represent will remain noticed. This election was one of the most important object lessons of our time. It is difficult, if not impossible, to ignore or dispute what happened and why. A negative disaster based on fear and untruths was saved by a man and a team who refused to compromise their ideals and beliefs. I think we are in good hands now. The rest is academic. I was looking for a sense of honesty and integrity and I believe I found them.
Steven Harper was ultimately responsible for one of the most significant turnarounds in Canadian Political History and he actually made it pretty easy for the Liberals to win such a huge and unexpected victory.
How did he manage this all by himself? He allowed his arrogance, narcissism and his egocentrism to limit his view of what Canadians really wanted from him. He made his own rules about process. He broke most of the conventional ways of conducting government business by refusing to hold press conferences to keep Canadians informed. So much for transparency. If you didn’t agree with him he would simply punish you in some way to send a message to others who were considering doing the same. There was not much ‘freedom’ in that inner cabinet. He tossed many of his followers ‘under the bus’ to avoid taking personal responsibility for making poor decisions. Good leaders don’t sacrifice those who support them. He was secretive and spent far too much time scheming and dealing behind closed doors. He negotiated a whole trade deal -TPP for the positive publicity he so badly needed during the election knowing that it was essentially ‘illegal’ to do that. HE made unsubstantiated claims about candidates and told of things that were patently not true. He fought a very ‘negative’ style campaign, as usual, because he knew that his record could not handle scrutiny under the ‘public microscope’. He misrepresented the truth and facts about a ‘balanced budget’. Apparently he has never legitimately balanced a budget since being in office and inherited a 13+ billion dollar surplus when he assumed power for the first time. That was courtesy of Cretien/Martin. Then there was the robo-call scandal subverting the electoral process, the blatant attempt to hold onto power and to avoid a public inquiry by implementing prorogation of parliament and the senators scandal. Many of his trusted officers and supporters quit near the end of the campaign because of his behaviour and his actions.The list goes on. He is truly the “teflon man’ because much of this never stuck to him. The point is he did all of this despite the counsel of his inner circle. His undoing in the end came about because he simply dismissed and underestimated Mr. Trudeau as a serious political opponent. I believe many people did. He is, by all description, a bully.
I mentioned at the beginning of this article that there are some very important lessons in all of this for our children. Mr. Trudeau may be a bit thin on experience but no one can now say that he isn’t ready to lead, that he is tough and resilient, hard working, a very quick learner (he learned how to fight the bully without getting into the same mud pit as the other two), intelligent and some suggest he is a visionary. We’ll see. He is well spoken, a tough negotiator and in all of this remained a good family man and a prime example for the youth of this country to emulate. For a while Mr. Harper pushed him around, verbally assaulted him of course, tried to isolate him, tried to embarass him, made fun of him, discounted him, ignored him and for awhile Mr. Trudeau took it and tried to take the high road but he didn’t fare all that well. Then Mr. Trudeau took another path. He stood up to Mr. Harper. He began to counter the innuendo and the character assaults but remained truthful so that he didn’t compromise his principles. He wanted to run a campaign that was positive, supportive, inclusive and genuine. He was open and honest about what he was going to do concerning budgets and deficits and people began to pay more attention to what he had to say. The more he did this the harder Mr. Harper pushed back. Again it seemed as though Mr. Harper did not think that Mr. Trudeau would stick around in the fight–that he would tire–that he would slowly and quietly slink into the night leaving Mr. Mulcair to fight alone. It’s the old divide and conquer strategy. Problem was Mr. Trudeau only got stronger and tougher. That is one of the lessons that kids who are bullied need to keep in mind. You might take a few shots but if you stand up and build support around you, you can outlast the bully’s in this world. His acceptance speech was uplifting and positive and inclusive–all the ideals that he managed to espouse during the campaign. He stayed true to his beliefs and his goals. Bravo MR. Trudeau. You have managed to do what Mr. Harper could never do and you did it with style and conviction. You managed to heal so much indecision and fear all in about 20 minutes last night during your victory speech. The kids of this era have been shown how to beat a bully and move on.
Thtat’s how I see it anyways–all the best, Jim
Please send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org OR jimcloughley.com
Pass this article along to friends and neighbours if you don’t mind