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Monday, October 20, 2008

Wither Stéphane

Like everyone else, I was eagerly awaiting news of Stéphane Dion's press conference earlier today. Not because I wanted to gloat over his expected resignation as leader of the Liberal Party of Canada. But rather because I contemplating doing something different - like saying something nice about him.

I had words rolling in my head about how he was a decent sort of fellow, a poor politician and party leader, but still a decent chap. I thought I would say that he pushed his failed agenda because he truly believed in his Green Shift as a step towards solving all that global warming nonsense. He wouldn't be alone. Millions of Canadians have drunk that kool aid and Dion would be following his beliefs. Not such a bad thing. Misguided, but still a noble thing.

With his anticipated departure, I was even contemplating making a few changes to this blog, which after all takes it's very name from the fact that Stéphane named his own dog after the disastrous Kyoto accord. I was going to remove that little graphic that says Stéphane Dion is not a leader. I felt that this blog could continue on without Stéphane Dion. After all, Kyoto is a "dog" in its own right, without any help from M. Dion.

That was before I heard the news.

Instead of doing the graceful thing and stepping down as leader immediately, Stéphane Dion chose to stay on until a leadership convention can be held in the spring. And that's not so bad either. He is the leader and this was his decision. Still OK.

But then he went on to explain his decision. Dion refused to accept the blame for losing the election, the poorest showing for the Liberal Party since 1867. He blamed the Conservative "propaganda machine" for "misrepresenting his leadership and goals".

Come on, Stéphane don't you know this is politics? Its a blood sport, you know. The Conservative campaign was effective in portraying you as an ineffective leader only because you let them. Besides, you Liberals have done your best to misrepresent Stephen Harper over the years, remember "scary" and "secret agenda".

Next he blamed his own Party for poor fundraising! He said they couldn't compete with the spending of the Conservatives. This is true but who is going to carry the blame for that if not the leader himself? A strong leader can motivate the grass roots and fill the party coffers. You need look no further than to Stephen Harper for proof.

As for his Green Shift, which proved unpopular with voters, Dion said "at the end of the day, people thought it was a carbon tax and were afraid of it". He is implying that Canadians didn't understand his Green Shift. If it hadn't been for those nasty Conservatives, people would have understood!

I beg to differ with M. Dion on this one. I think Canadians understood all too well what it meant to allow the Liberals into power with a mandate to implement a massive new tax on everything. And they wanted no part of it.

Stéphane Dion's leadership has left the Liberal party broke and disunified. More so than when he took the helm. But most importantly, Dion, wrapped in his own arrogant self importance has just shown us that he still doesn't get it.

It would have been better for him to have just slipped quietly into the night.

But hey, I won't have to change the curtains around here for a while yet.


Louise said...

Bang on. The man was an academic trying to be a politician. He just didn't have the right stuff.

Anonymous said...

He blames the Conservatives and attack ads?

Nobody does attack ads like a Liberal.

Remember the "Hidden Agenda"?
"Soldiers in streets of the city with guns"?... not to mention the homophobe/abortion/women's rights issues.

And they absolutely skewered Preston Manning. They criticized his hair, glasses, voice and then when he tried to accomodate them and change, they criticized that.

Sorry, Stephane, but your blame game is full of holes. I think you're a decent man, but you don't have the cahonies needed to run that nest of vipers.