Tuesday, May 03, 2011

Clearing the Liberal Decks

You have sat too long for any good you have been doing.
Depart, I say, and let us have done with you.

Ignatieff is gone and small will be the loss.   There are plenty of Libs eulogizing Iggy today.  He was a swell guy, a real intellectual, such a hard worker.  Okay, when you're finished with the bullshit let's get down to reality.

Hard worker?  Really?

The time the Liberal Party and Canadians most needed hard work out of Ignatieff came when Harper first prorogued Parliament just as Canada was being overtaken by a global economic meltdown, the worst in generations.  Iggy had a window of opportunity to do some very hard work brainstorming a Liberal stimulus/recovery budget initiative, something with real vision.   Instead he took the time to write a very important book on his maternal ancestors.

When Parliament returned, Ignatieff came back empty-handed.  He left himself and the Liberals no option but to endorse Harper's pathetic "pinata budget."  He compounded his dereliction by making a fool of himself, boasting that he was putting Stephen Harper "on probation."

Bus tours and barbeques?   Is that "hard work"?  I suppose it is, sort of, for the bus driver anyway.

A two-year leadership/policy vacuum?  Is that "hard work"?  Really?  Oh yeah, there was that "thinkers' conference" thingee, the spectacle with the roster dead weighted with CEOs and management consultants.

Iggy did achieve some things.   He put the LPC on the side of Israel in its conflict with the Palestinians.  He even pre-absolved Israel of its atrocities in the Gaza invasion.  He certainly shifted the Party to the centre-right, fashioned it as something akin to Conservative-Lite.  In so doing he helped Steve Harper achieve his prime directive, moving Canada's political centre well to the right.  And Ignatieff also did Harper a solid by proposing an extension of Canada's military role in the FUBAR known as Afghanistan.

Ignatieff did a lot to the Liberal Party and it left scars.  He didn't even bother to hold the centre, allowing Layton to move in from the left and Harper from the right until Iggy was squeezed so tightly he struggled for air.  In so many ways he is directly responsible for bringing the Liberal Party to ruin.

Now he's out - two years too late, but he's gone.   However the job's not done.   The Party needs to ensure that those who engineered Ignatieff's ascendancy are also put out to pasture.  I will end this with another observation from Oliver Cromwell:

I had rather have a plain, russet-coated Captain,
that knows what he fights for, and loves what he knows,
than that which you call a Gentle-man and is nothing else.



LMA said...

I'm glad you posted this MoS, because it is how I feel today. How we are going to survive the next four years I have no idea - the real losers are the environment, public health care, our social programs, our democracy, and the people of Alberta. The winners are big oil and the corporations. Had the NDP surge never happened, I think the result would still have been a Harper majority. The Libs were missing in action. I guess we have to learn the hard way.

The Mound of Sound said...

Oh LMA, please don't fret. We have laughing Jack to keep Harper accountable, to hold him in check. Now if we can just get Layton out of his clown car.

Redbedhead said...

Uh, MoS, you're mocking Layton but last I checked he cleaned your clock. I also recall the Liberals propping up the Tories for the last five years and turning down a coalition to defeat the Tories. Turns out that was your only chance for a lifeline and the Liberals turned it down. Whoops!

The Mound of Sound said...

Actually, pissant, he didn't clean my clock. I wasted my ballot voting strategically. At least I got that out of my system but it's going to take a while before I feel clean again.

Enjoy your victory. Canadians paid dearly for it and they'll keep on paying as they watch laughing Jack flounder and our country decline.

sharonapple88 said...

Uh, MoS, you're mocking Layton but last I checked he cleaned your clock.

More important, both clocks were cleaned by Harper. Pyrrhic victory at best for the NDP. It doesn't matter what they do, the Conservatives don't have to listen to them.

Conservatives are also the master of the attack ads. With the amount of money they raise on average, I'm expecting a new set with regards to the NDP sometime in the next year or so to prepare for the 2015-2016 election. I suppose this would also help discredit the NDP's attacks on the government.

Uncommoner said...

Mound, it's over. Slagging Jack Layton and Michael Ignatieff won't help anything now.

The NDP are in opposition, but how effective they'll be against a tightly-knit Harper majority I really don't want to speculate.

Does a two party system really serve Canada? Frankly, I am missing the moderating influence of the Bloc Quebecois already.

The Mound of Sound said...

Uncom, this is about a lot more than slagging Ignatieff. It's about excising the insiders who beset the Liberal Party with him and who, even now, are selecting his successor.

A new leader isn't going to rescue the Liberal Party. That's going to take vision and we need to understand that was where Iggy was most deficient and how much that cost the Party.

If the Liberals can't find a reason to exist they might as well disappear.

Redbedhead said...

Pissant? Very sophisticated word. However, since it is the Liberal Party of Canada who are now insignificant and, perhaps, obsolete, it ought better to be saved for them. And, whether the NDP can be an effective opposition will largely depend on what kind of mobilizations they contribute to outside of parliament. It was under a Tory majority that abortion rights were won in the first place. But it certainly won't be by kow-towing to the Tories or propping them up, as the Liberals have done for the last five years. The Libs have only themselves to blame and tossing schoolyard taunts at Layton only make you look like, well, schoolboys.