Posts Tagged ‘Trudeau’

Don’t get too excited Ms. May.

Saturday, May 11th, 2019

If you want an area of Canada where the Green party runs rampant, go to Vancouver Island. In fact, the entire area around the Strait of Georgia seems overrun with Greens, Druids and other pagan religions. Just standing under one of those magnificent, lordly trees on the Island fills you with wonder and a sense of the spirituality.

But—maybe getting one more Green party member into parliament might be a brief, but quickly lost, breeze. I hardly believe that two seats in parliament are the beginning of an avalanche. I think the wise voters of Beautiful British Columbia sent a message to the east. It was a polite wake-up call.

It was a very strong message to the NDP. It said get with the program. Get a leader, get a raison d’etre, get real. The Winnipeg General Strike, the Dirty Thirties and the Great Depression are fading into the mists of time. Join us in the 21st Century.

It was a kick in the ass for the conservatives. Ignore Global Warming at your peril. Your rich friends can fund you but do you belong to them? Are you the menials of foreign owners? What are you doing for Canada today?

I think the strongest condemnation was of prime minister Trudeau and the liberals. The handwriting is on the wall—and they have been found wanting. You cannot walk away from your failures. You own them and you have to stand to account for them. Nobody is happy with the liberal’s careless handling of the SNC-Lavalin debacle. And they owe Canadians some apologies. No person who cares about the environment can allow Justin Trudeau to twin the Trans Mountain pipeline. Is that the best he can do in helping our aboriginal peoples? There is a very big difference between diplomacy and simpering. He needs to learn that sometimes we all need to speak—loud and clear.

All Canadians can hope is that over the summer, our politicians will come to understand the concerns of Canadians. They need to understand what brings us together as well as what divides us. We need a new rationale from all parties. None are exempt. That is not a recess bell that will toll on October 21.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Is Kenney a Constitutional Crisis?

Monday, May 6th, 2019

It seems that between Jason Kenney and his predecessor as premier of Alberta, Kenney has the shriller voice. When he goes to Ottawa to bitch and whine about how his province is not given everything it wants, he knows the buttons to push and the people to harangue. There was no sign at the airport saying ‘Welcome Home Jason!’

And nobody is buying that crap about “a growing crisis of national unity” in Alberta that has only been created in the smarmy mind of Jason Kenney.

Who would believe the threats over Kenney’s opinion that the federal government “doesn’t care about a devastating period of economic adversity”? Any economic adversity in Alberta was created by greed and a lack of economic diversity.

It is disappointing that Kenney and his narrow-minded party got more than 50 per cent in the recent election. It says that Albertans, by and large are buying into the bitching and whining. It is easy to understand people who think they should not pay taxes. And it is easy to understand greed but there is nothing wrong in Alberta that the voters did not bring on themselves.

Albertans have ignored the very wise advice of former premier Peter Lougheed and devastated his Alberta Heritage Trust Fund. This was a fund to build a future for Albertans and instead successive provincial governments have used it to pay bills that were the taxpayers’ responsibility. This kind of waste and misdirection of the funds will continue as long as Albertans vote for it.

If the voters did not know what a sleaze Jason Kenney was before they elected him, they are certainly going to learn now. He took his victory lap in Ottawa to make foolish threats against the liberal government and prime minister Trudeau.

When is he going to learn what is needed to be done in Alberta?

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

A year late and a candidate short.

Friday, May 3rd, 2019

Welcome to the fray, Jeremy Broadhurst. As the just appointed campaign chair for the liberals this year, you have your work cut out for you. I would not say the job is impossible but Easter is over and I am sure God restricts us to only one resurrection per year. Getting Justin Trudeau’s liberals campaign for re-election back to life will be a tough chore.

But you have to admit that any guy who could have us believing that foreign minister Cynthia Freeland is at least a foot taller than actual, has to be a miracle worker in anyone’s book. As the minister’s chief of staff, Broadhurst backed her up during some very tough negotiations in Washington. She might not have come off a miracle-worker but surviving the melee counts for something.

And it is too bad Broadhurst is probably having to work on the if-come. Fund-raising for the liberals has been tanking and there might not be much on the dinner table for a while.

But when you realize that Broadhurst took on the tough jobs in the last federal election, while back-stopping the group of dilettantes around school teacher Justin Trudeau, you are inclined to give him a look. Justin might have been raised in a quasi-political household but his father learned to let the politicos do their jobs.

Broadhurst has nowhere near the seasoning of the late Senator Keith Davey. Nor does he have the training for the job that Keith gave to Senator David Smith.

A funny footnote on David Smith was that he had never won an election as a candidate without my help. He called me when the writ was dropped for the 1993 election and asked me to spend the election commuting to Barrie from Toronto to run the liberal campaign in what was then York-Simcoe riding. I do not recall what I told him. It was probably something terse. It amused me later that York-Simcoe was the only riding the liberals lost in Ontario. David complained to me that Jean Chrétien kept telling, anyone who would listen, that it was David’s fault the liberals lost York-Simcoe.

But the point of this is that Broadhurst is taking on this campaign about a year too late. He is starting from the bottom of a hole that Justin Trudeau dug with the help of Gerald Butts and company.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

On being liberal in disquieting times.

Sunday, April 28th, 2019

The word ‘disquieting’ took a while to choose. I have been trying to define the times leading up to the October 21 federal election and it reminds us of flying through clouds. You want to break into the bright sunlight, you know is above you, but that oppressive cotton candy is just a grey mist that continues to embrace and smother you.

In these disquieting times, the clouds are a metaphor for the cocoon of a country’s confusion. The angst of the SNC-Lavalin affair is but a construct from which we draw the prejudices of our times.

There is no question but the voters are disquieted. It is not the anger that produced the Doug Ford victory last year in Ontario or meeting the demands of greed recently in Alberta. Even peaceful little Prince Edward Island showed some spunk by bringing on the Green party to be the official opposition.

But neither of the major opposition parties in Ottawa have adequate leadership to survive the rigors of a general election. ‘Chuckles’ Scheer from Saskatchewan is but a servile retainer serving the aperitifs for the conservative wolves in premiers’ clothing. Jagmeet Singh is but testimony to the hospice condition of the political party that Tommy Douglas built.

But that is certainly no excuse for Justin Trudeau. He has unfulfilled promises from 2015. He is the one that still needs to prove he can save our environment. He has commitments to our aboriginals. And he still has to explain the events that cost him a justice minister and another cabinet member, his principal secretary and the clerk of the privy council. His hypocrisy in declaring himself an environmentalist and then buying the Trans Mountain pipeline has been a very difficult pill for many liberals to swallow.

His story is that he traded it for a guarantee from Alberta’s previous NDP government to put a cap on carbon from the extraction and the upgrading of the bitumen to allow it to be exported.

The incoming premier of Alberta, Jason Kenney, has promised an end to all environmental protections in Alberta and threatened court proceedings to get the B.C. and federal governments out of his way. Now if we could just get Mr. Kenney to bend over, we could show Justin Trudeau what to do with his pipeline.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Together, we can.

Monday, April 22nd, 2019

Prime minister Trudeau asked for party unity last week. He was at the Ontario liberal gathering in Mississauga. It was a friendly crowd. He told them that liberals fighting each other only helps the conservatives. I cannot argue that but before agreeing with him, Justin needs to learn to listen to his party.

This was the first time, to my knowledge, that he even admitted that liberals cross Canada have been concerned and disturbed by the SNC-Lavalin affair. Many of us listened with growing dismay to the presentations before the parliamentary justice committee by former justice minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, principal secretary Gerald Butts and privy council clerk Michael Wernick.

What liberals did not see during the months absorbed by this case, was leadership from the leader of the liberal party. “Where’s the wimp?” was the concern.

Our liberal party was being trampled. The opposition were having a field day of scorn. The news media were bugling ‘Boots and Saddles’ as they smelled blood.

And where was Justin Trudeau? He was telling (or sending instructions to) the liberal members of the parliamentary committee to stonewall the other parties. He never really answered any questions in the House. He demoted justice minister Wilson-Raybould.

To add to his problems, he usurped the role of caucus in determining who can be a member of caucus and the role of the party in choosing its representatives. If nothing else, he could have listened to the party. These people are his friends. They had questions. They were in the dark. They had the right to know what the hell was going on.

And was MP Jane Philpott just collateral damage? Or was she supposedly the Wicked Witch of the East who was under Dorothy’s house when it landed in Oz?

During this fiasco, all the concerned liberals across Canada got were urgent pleas for money from the party. What we needed was to see some contrition from the leader.

If Andrew Scheer is prime minister of Canada at the end of October, it is on your head Justin.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Political Pipe-Dreams.

Sunday, April 21st, 2019

While the rest of North America were out on an Easter egg hunt this morning, Albertans were out beating the bushes looking for the pipeline that their politicians have been foolishly promising them. This could be one of those blue-sky political promises on the same track as a chicken in every pot.

And why should anyone believe it is going to happen? Albertans have already been informed that the federal government has delayed the decisions on this pipeline until June of this year. When you have been stalled for years, what is another month?

This Trans Mountain pipeline has been a good news-bad news story from the beginning. It is an old pipeline that was built long before anyone thought of using a pipeline to send bitumen from the tar sands over the Rockies. The plan was that the previous owners, American-owned Kinder Morgan, would twin the old crude oil pipeline and almost quadruple the capacity of the pipeline for diluted bitumen by adding heaters and high pressure to the two lines.

Obviously, the Kinder Morgan people had studied the possibilities and had made a few stabs at getting the twinning started but quickly found themselves mired in environmental challenges and protests from aboriginal groups. The answer was a quick sale and the federal government became the surprise buyer.

At $4.5 billion, the pipeline was no bargain. Estimates peg the twinning and equipping the pipeline to handle the bitumen will cost anywhere from $7 billion to more than $9 billion.

It might seem odd that a politician such as Justin Trudeau—who persists in claiming he is an environmentalist—would promote a pipeline for the output from the tar sands that is destroying the environment of Northern Alberta and will create three times the carbon pollution of regular crude when converted into an ersatz crude oil. And Albertans will give the liberal prime minister no thanks for it!

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Where’s Jagmeet Singh?

Saturday, April 20th, 2019

Somebody needs to check the potholes on the Yellow Brick Road. Could NPP leader Jagmeet Singh have fallen into one of them? If it was not the daily feed of twits on his Twitter account from the NDPer’s office, we could assume he might be on holiday somewhere.

Mind you, he and the wife do need a holiday. To spend your honeymoon getting your husband elected to parliament is a challenge to any new wife. Day in, day out political campaigning does little for a marriage.

And it is not as though the NDP leader is having much impact on the pollsters or the public or the news media or his caucus in Ottawa. Basically, Jagmeet Singh is nowhere. As they say, he has been tried in the balance, and found wanting. He is basically a very wanting guy.

It is kind of like his twits from his office on Twitter. The past three days, we have seen standard NDP boiler-plate smoke on housing, (inadequate), workers’ rights (serious) and climate change (this is bad). Buried in this material was a note that he might currently be in Nanaimo, on beautiful Vancouver Island.

With close to six months remaining before the October 21 poll date set for this year, you hardly need pollsters to tell you that not all Canadians are pleased with the performance of the liberal government.

But the problem is not so much that the voters are pissed with the present government as where those votes might go. The liberals have to hope that those votes they have lost are scattered around the various parties. If too many of those votes go to the conservatives, Justin Trudeau could be a one term prime minister. Seeing that the Green party is up about three points over their usual inflated vote at this stage, that might be part of the answer to a weak NDP.

And the conservatives, under ‘Chuckles’ Scheer, are not necessarily polling in majority territory. There is a lot of shaking out to do before what ever happens in October happens.  The only prediction I might make at this stage is that Green leader Elizabeth May might have a small caucus to brag about come October. At this stage, we could be headed for a minority government—the same thing that happened to Justin’s father in 1972.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Not just a pocket to be picked.

Friday, April 19th, 2019

The chickens came home to roost faster than expected. While I have been forecasting dire consequences as Justin Trudeau downgraded the liberal party to a fan club, we are starting to see the problems.

Chatting with an active liberal just the other day, he told me that he was annoyed at his local liberal organization. Here it is six months before an election and his party is showing no signs of life. When he contacted his local electoral district president, the chap told him he was not even listed on the party’s computerized lists. As a loyal canvasser for the party and a regular contributor, the chap had every reason to be annoyed. “I’m not just a pocket to be picked,” was his comment.

Justin Trudeau has never recognized that there is a balance needed with fund raising and party activity. This liberal I was talking to was like many of us over the years. We were involved. We were a recognized and valued part of the party. We worked tirelessly at getting our chosen candidate elected. We took a vocal role in the development of party policy. We took responsibility for choosing candidates who could work with our parliamentary caucus

In our thinking, the leader of the party was responsible for the elected members but he reported to the party as a whole. When they changed the rules for all parties back in the 1990s, they said that the leader of the party had to sign off on each candidate. That did not mean that we wanted the leader to choose our candidate.

Since then all parties seem to think they should be run by their leader. Even the supposedly democratic NDP has a leader now who thinks he has the authority to kick an MP out of the party caucus.

Recently, liberals thought it might have been smart for Justin Trudeau to pass that right to his caucus instead of taking the blame for the ejection of MPs Jody Wilson-Raybould and Jane Philpott. The inexperienced Justin Trudeau piled his errors higher and deeper throughout the entire SNC-Lavalin affair. If he had been paying attention to his caucus during that time, he either lacked good advice or ignored it.

But I am pleased to say that there are probably still many liberals ready and willing to get to work and help make sure our country does not give up on the liberal party in the fall.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Quit bitching and drink your Kool-Aid.

Monday, April 8th, 2019

We hear that there is no federal liberal party. Instead, we are told it is the Trudeau cult. The only thing is that, before we drink our Kool-Aid, we need to check to see whose idea this was anyway.

It was nine years ago that the MP from Papineau electoral district in Montreal started his campaign to win the liberal leadership. It was easier than he expected. After the experience of the party with three lacklustre leaders since the Jean Chrétien era ended, liberals needed hope and the voters were tired of Harper’s conservatives. We revelled in sunny days. Everyone wanted a selfie with the young Trudeau.

He electrified Canada’s youth and encouraged our seniors. We saw vitality and the acceptance of challenge. The opposition in parliament were left leaderless and in a funk. He excited foreign leaders and was welcomed at world councils. He took leadership in environmentalism. He made sure women were in positions of power. He proclaimed his feminism. The 21st Century belonged to Justin Trudeau.

And Trudeau’s mob grew and expanded. The opposition chose housekeepers over action figures for leaders. They saw the coming election as hopeless for their narrow views of Canada’s needs.

Nobody seemed to note this commentary that was vainly signalling its growing concerns for this party and its leadership. It was not all sunny days. Justin Trudeau’s elitism was showing. His lack of depth on the issues concerning. His promises were stumbling to become law.

Where were the believers of true liberalism? It was the Ontario liberals who were vanquished first. They were squashed. Their leader at the time, surrendered before the votes were even cast. And now there are few sunny days forecast for the summer and fall of 2019.

But never ever call the liberal party a lynch mob. You need never malign so many caring Canadians. You can accuse the prime minister and some of his cabinet of having failed us. That is fair.

But the ideal of liberalism does not change. The rational of individual rights and freedoms are the backbone of this country. How many of the peoples of nations around the world envy the freedoms of Canadians? Those are worth fighting for.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me

Tip-toe through these tulips (Part 2).

Sunday, April 7th, 2019

Was it spite? The story of Jody Wilson-Raybould and her side-kick Jane Philpott has yet to be fathomed. What benefits them? They both had so much to offer. Wilson-Raybould was the first woman of aboriginal ancestry to serve in the cabinet. Her people needed her wisdom in that role. They deserve action, dignity, justice, recognition and reconciliation. It takes someone who has spent years in aboriginal councils to truly understand their needs.

In Ontario, we all watched last year as the irresponsible rage of the voters decimated the liberal caucus at Queen’s Park. Instead of good government, we elected an incompetent blowhard and his mealy-mouthed conservative followers. Why? We could certainly see it coming. It was like the voters in the United States who elected Donald Trump. “Take that you fools!” The voters burnt their bridges. They enjoyed a pyrrhic victory. May they enjoy their hell.

And here we are, watching the federal liberals bleed the votes they need in October. Does Justin Trudeau think all will be forgiven by then? The bleeding started even before he went to do his dress-up routine in Bollywood. He embarrassed Canadians.

Trudeau proved a poor leader. Many men interpret his self-declared feminism as weakness. Too many promises proved hollow. He had promised election reform without any background information. He introduced a weak and unsatisfactory assisted-suicide bill. He aided Canada’s nuclear families and forgot the seniors. He talked about an undefined middle class for whom he cared.

He preached environmentalism and then bought a pipeline to ship highly polluting tar sands bitumen to foreign parts, who are free to pollute as they wish.

Trudeau has seriously damaged the liberal brand. This was at a time when he needed the strength of the brand in the Atlantic provinces. He needed depth in Quebec. He can only split vote-rich Ontario. And the trip across the west is a downhill run for liberals all the way. He stands in the bottom of the hole he has dug for himself and his party, looking at a small piece of blue sky.

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Copyright 2019 © Peter Lowry

Complaints, comments, criticisms and compliments can be sent to  peter@lowry.me