And now a word from Michael Ignatieff

by Aaron Wherry

On the anniversary of the end of his first and last national campaign, Michael Ignatieff posts a note.

Our vision was to build jobs and growth on equity and fairness instead of corporate tax breaks and austerity. The values we fought for were clear: evidence rather than ideology in making policy, compromise and co-operation in place of meanness and spite in our politics, and equality and unity in place of resentment and division in our national life.  Let’s also remember what we fought against: a government that plunged us into deficit and now is cutting programs that don’t need to be axed; that bought the wrong planes at the wrong price and misled everyone about it; that builds prisons instead of investing in education; and that strong-arms Parliament and every Canadian who disagrees with them.

A long road to renewal lies ahead, but today it’s worth remembering we fought for a good cause. One day that cause will prevail again.

More on the rest of this day’s festivities later this afternoon.




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And now a word from Michael Ignatieff

  1. Unlike his last piece, I can’t find anything to disagree with there.

  2. Exactly what I voted for, and still want.

    But they didn’t get the word out well enough.

  3. Some of the responses to his FB, lol. Campaign is over.

    “stay retired or go back to USA. CANADA was not good enough for you for 20 + years. please leave.”

    “I cannot forgive you for what you said about Quebec Michael – you really don’t understand “Canada”.

    “I’ve moved to the NDP. I didn’t leave the party – it left me.”

    • Responses from the pmo shouldn’t ought to count by rights.

      Anyhow he didn’t go back anywhere, so can we lay that lie to rest?

  4. Minor quibble: Canada didn’t buy the “wrong planes” yet. We’re still far from purchasing new fighter jets.

    • Depends what Peter Mackay/Harper are saying on any given day, though.

    • On a Wherry comment board I don’t think you’re allowed to have a quibble, even of the minor variety, with anything a former or current LPC leader says. Hence, despite being entirely factual, your comment has been relegated to the “so poor we won’t even show it” rating category.

      Welcome to the open-and-fair-minded world of the progressive left centre!

      • Agreed. Is it any wonder there are only about half a dozen regular commenters on Wherry’s blog? The latest Disqus change (too poorly-rated to show the comments) will further accelerate the homogenization of viewpoints here, and further alienate any dissenting voices.

        Macleans’ Blog Central has become a hollow shell of what it once was, many years ago, when there was genuine discussion and many viewpoints in the comments threads.

        • True enough, although even several years ago there were serious problems with abusive, vitriolic, and slanderous commentary – particularly from the majority lefties toward the minority righties. It’s not a trivial problem to get a good forum for open discussion going without letting the poisonous types take over. However, it is clear that the current arrangement manages to achieve little beyond shallow echoes of socially and fiscally leftist thinking. You can fairly reliably pick out the best comments by looking for the ones that are hidden from view.

          • There’s that funny whining sound again.

          • Your mistake is thinking extremists add to a conversation when in fact they usually detract from it (same as blatant liars). Nobody’s saying you can’t read the more outlandish stuff that gets voted down, just if you want to stay in the solid middle, it’s there for you, just click.

            I would like to think that if an extremist, of either side, broke tradition and made a good point, it wouldn’t get voted down.

          • Your mistake is in thinking that the commentariat on a Wherry thread represents the centre. They don’t. If the commenters around here were representative of the Canadian electorate, the Liberals would have won the last election in a landslide, with the NDP as Official Opposition. You’ll be surprised to learn that this is not how the actual Canadian electorate voted, and therefore does not represent the centre.

            In other words, what’s judged “extreme” here is actually either centre, or perhaps somewhat right of centre. The calibration is off. It’s an echo chamber.

            As to your final point: you might like to think that someone who questions the leftist dogma around here with a decent point would not get voted down. But then you might look at the example we’re discussing: Mike514′s point above, which is perfectly factual and relevant, was voted into invisibility when I got here. It’s since been voted back out of obscurity (by me, for one), but the “centre” here apparently thought it was pretty heretical.

            P.S. Comparing “extremists” to blatant liars is interesting. Given that “liar” is an objective term, whereas “extremist” is a relative one, I think the comparison is very poor. By your standards, the Abolitionists would have been deemed not worth listening to in 1860 since they were radical extremists, what with advocating the abolition of slavery even at the expense of Civil War and all.

          • tl; dr.

          • Yatp. Wtg.

          • I agree. I don’t go near Wherry’s blog much anymore, but I’m still inclined to write a comment once in a blue moon if he says something remotely interesting. But now I know my comment will disappear, thanks to his leftist followers, so there’s not much point. In fact, I’d expect many conservative comments to disappear from most blogs on the site.

  5. “Our vision was to build jobs and growth on equity and fairness instead of corporate tax breaks and austerity. The values we fought for were clear: evidence rather than ideology in making policy …. ”

    What evidence is Iggy talking about? How does Iggy plan to build jobs and growth without wealth?

    Also, people who talk about having ‘visions’ are considered nutters by most people. Socialists and Social Conservatives both have ‘visions’ and they are equally kooky – flip side of same coin. Too bad there isn’t a liberal party to protect us from the loons.

    Doug Saunders ~ Globe/Mail:

    In fact, the strongest arguments against corporate tax come from the left. They were most eloquently expressed by Robert Reich, the economist who was considered on the far left of Bill Clinton’s cabinet during his tenure as labour secretary. Corporate tax, he noted, is fundamentally regressive: It shifts wealth to the rich. And not just because General Electric avoids it and corner shops don’t. Since corporations do not physically exist, corporate tax is ultimately paid by individuals – and, as many studies have shown, those individuals tend to be the company’s workers more often than its shareholders or executives.

    • I don’t understand how you can so badly misread 2 short paragraphs.

    • Here, I’ll bump you up a little bit before you eventually disappear.

      It’s getting so that I only read the comments I have to click on to reveal.

  6. Let me paraphrase:

    (1) Those Harperites sure are lapdogs for the rich.
    (2) Also, they’re science-denying religious fanatics.
    (3) And they’re mean and spiteful.
    (4) Deficits are bad, but spending is good.
    (5) What idiot thought it was a good idea to get involved in the F-35 program? Never mind.
    (6) Also they’re all about locking people up instead of education. Did I mention that they’re science-deniers?
    (7) And finally, they’re dictatorial thugs. Fascists, actually. I’m about to be shot for even writing these words.
    (8) We are the world. We are the children. We lost incredibly badly, but some day Canadians will see the error of their ways and realize how wonderful we Liberals really are.

    I think that sums it up. One can see why he lost, assuming one isn’t a Liberal partisan….so I guess pretty much no one on this comment board has a clue why he lost.

  7. “Our vision was to build jobs and growth on equity and fairness instead of corporate tax breaks and austerity” Someone really should inform this guy that economic growth doesn’t come from uttering platitudes. He then goes on to lament being “plunged” into deficit, when in fact it was Iggy’s party that was advocating for a LARGER deficit at the time. And right after complaining about the deficit? Cutting programs that “don’t need to be axed”. Right, because we can simply slay the deficit with “equity and fairness”, right? How’d that work out in Ontario? Or Greece? Every public utterance this guys made since being tossed to the curb has probably made everyone who didn’t vote for him very happy with their decision.

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