Sunday, August 26, 2012

If You're a Liberal, Explain It To Me

If you're a real, committed Liberal, I could use your help.   As a truly disaffected Lib, I've become disconnected from the party, detached from whatever it supposedly stands for today.

For most of my life I considered myself a true Liberal.  I certainly wasn't a New Democrat, although I admired David Lewis, nor was I ever attracted to the Progressive Conservatives, although I had great respect for Robert Stanfield.  

No, I was pretty much a Trudeau Liberal and, to me, Lloyd Axworthy would have been a fitting successor to lead the party.   Instead it went to Turner, Chretien, Martin, Dion and Ignatieff as the party ushered itself out of Sussex Drive, out of Stornoway and, quite deservedly, into Motel 6 out on the highway near Kanata.

I was never fond of Dion but I still supported the Dion Liberals.  Ignatieff's coronation never sat well with me but I accepted a responsibility to give him a chance to earn my support.  He never did.   Instead it was Ignatieff's hapless machinations that severed my connection with the LPC.   Like Layton, Ignatieff carried Harper's water in shifting Canada's political centre well to the right.  The Liberals went to a spot on the political spectrum I could not accept.

So, what I'd like to know is why any of you Libs remain dedicated to this party or whatever remains of it?  What does the Liberal brand mean today?   How do you find any meaning, any purpose, and reason for existing in today's Liberal Party of Canada?   The easy answer is to say they're not Harper and his Cons or they're not Mulcair and his New Dems but defining them as what they're not doesn't establish meaning or purpose or even any reason for existing.

I know this may invite Dippers to wade in and slag the Libs but we don't need proof that the ranks of the New Dems have a generous stock of sphincters so, please, stay out of this.

6 comments:

Jymn said...

As a former Liberal supporter, I have had no problem switching to the NDP. But if the Liberals do rise again and threaten the Cons, I will vote for them. Right now, terms like Lib or NDP or Green are meaningless. Defeating the Cons is the priority. Then let's sort out the divisions on the left afterwards. (BTW, I do believe the Libs will rise again but it will take a powerful leader who understands the media, something about which the last few leaders haven't had a clue. It has been their Achilles Heel.)

The Mound of Sound said...

Like me, Jymn, you're a "former" Liberal supporter. That, however, doesn't address the questions I have about what the LPC is today, what it stands for, why it should even exist?

The New Dems are struggling to admit they're the new centrist party, LDL's or Latter Day Liberals. They haven't figured out who exactly is supposed to pack up the old Left keepsakes, relics of a time past, and stow it in their crawl space and, for the moment, they're working really hard not to define themselves.

I regret the demise of the Liberal Party of the past but I also regret the passing of the old NDP, the "Conscience of Parliament."

Anyong said...

We need to vote for anyone who espouses the following: ADJECTIVE: 1a. Not limited to or by established, traditional, orthodox, or authoritarian attitudes, views, or dogmas; free from bigotry. b. Favoring proposals for reform, open to new ideas for progress, and tolerant of the ideas and behavior of others; broad-minded. c. Of, relating to, or characteristic of liberalism. d. Liberal Of, designating, or characteristic of a political party founded on or associated with principles of social and political liberalism. Has any of these been seen to be practiced in the last ten years?

The Mound of Sound said...

Well put, Anyong. Yes, I think that pretty well captures what a Liberal Party ought to be. It falls short, however, on explaining what the post-Iggy LPC is today. What does it stand for, what causes does it champion, what does it say to the Canadian people? I'm damned if I know.

Anonymous said...

Not only are you damned if you know but so are all the spokes thingies for the current incarnation of the LPC.

One of the unforgivable sins of the present day LPC it appears is speaking about fundamental values or base line truths.

I'm with you MoS. They can have my vote back when they stand for something.

They remind me in a lot of ways of the immediately post Glen Clark BC NDP.

Anonymous said...

"Conscience of Parliament."

When the government is composed of staunchly anti-democratic technocrats who are more than simply dismissive of parliament, there's no need for a "Conscience of Parliament."

Step one, defeat Dear Leader™ and his acolytes.

Step two, support anyone who agrees with me that sacred cows make the best hamburgers.