October 20, 2015

Justin Trudeau has the instinct to be Prime Minister? Yeah, right.

The day after the election and the sun came up. Reading Margaret Wente's column in Tuesday's Globe and Mail summed up some of our feelings:
A moment came during the red tidal wave Monday night when a friend turned to me in awe. The CBC’s seat counter had just clicked past 180 for the Liberals. "Oh my God," she said. "What have we done?"
No one, even diehard Conservatives, doubted that Stephen Harper deserved to lose. But even diehard Liberals wonder if Justin Trudeau deserved to win a majority government on his very first try, without the customary test of having to prove himself in Opposition, or, for that matter, any other responsible post in government. It’s like giving your kid the keys to the Ferrari before he’s finished driving lessons.
"I never thought this was in the realm of possibility," one voter told the CBC. "I wanted the young son to squeak in and be supported by maybe more experienced people.”"
"Oh well," said one of my Liberal friends cheerily. "At least he’ll have adult supervision."
It came down to strategic voting. People weren't voting for something, they were voting to rid the nation of Stephen Harper.

In his acceptance speech, which sounded much like his standard campaign speech, Mr Trudeau rambled on about hope in the classic Obama style, except of course that Mr Trudeau is no Barrack Obama. Hope was a cornerstone of President Obama's first campaign. It resonated with Americans in a powerful way. The message and the man were inspirational to millions; the thought of hope actually gave people reason to hope. Alas, there was none of that in the Liberal Party's campaign. Mr Trudeau did not inspire so much as he offered, in the final days of the election campaign, the best way of throwing Mr Harper out.

Mr Trudeau was helped along in the final weeks of the election by a collapse in NDP support, especially after the niqab affair sent their polling numbers in Quebec tumbling, and then throughout the rest of Canada as the Quebec polls were interpreted to us by Mansbridge and company. That racism and Islamophobia played a part in this election is something our good nation did not discuss on election night, nor is it likely to do so in the days ahead. Once NDP polling numbers went down, voters decided to give the Liberals another chance.

So another Canadian election where we voted negatively. Against something, or more correctly: against someone.

We have elected someone who has accomplished nothing of merit or value in his life. He is not an artist, nor a successful business person, nor is he an intellectual or a humanitarian. Mr Trudeau has done nothing but live a wonderfully, comfortable life.

According to Bob Rae, elder statesman of the Liberal Party and with all the sleaze that comes from crossing the floor, Justin Trudeau simply has the instinct to be Prime Minister. Instinct. Really? We've elected a prime minister based on throwing another out, and the best we can hope for is not experience or accomplishment, but his instinct.

We have at least four years to try out Mr Trudeau before we do this election thing all over again. "Oh my God. What have we done?"

Copyright 2015 by Jim Murray.

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