Change Michael Ignatieff wants you to believe in


An interesting mission statement from Michael Ignatieff, via the Dalhousie Gazette’s account of the Liberal leader’s appearance last week in Halifax.

“My business is to inspire you, but you have to know how much your presence today inspires me.”

Then this from a Dalhousie prof.

“His communication skills are so superb that he is an inspirational leader. The essence of politics is rhetoric – that’s the heart and core of leadership… This is what separates him from Dion.”

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Change Michael Ignatieff wants you to believe in

  1. You have to be kidding? He is pretty good at public speaking but inspirational, superb! – this was obviously written by someone who has never heard him speak = ROFL. He will be a good match for Harper in the HOC question period where they both can adopt that ‘ Holier than thou self righteous stance with the leading chin and furrowed brow profile (although Iggy gets marks for the best furrowed brow)

    • Now, now wayne you have to attmit that the prof was quite ight to pt out that michael was that much more inspiring than Dion? Of course he could have added anyone is an improvement. Personally i’m fine with Iggy as long as he keeps it general. It’s when he gts specific that he scares folks.With steve it’s pretty much the other way around. I only feel comfortable when he’s specific. that’s when i can see the whites of his eyes. When he’s trying to be my friend or wearing fluffy blue sweaters that’s when i begin to sweat.

      • you have a point … I will consider it.

  2. I’m fine with Iggie as well. However I find it hystarical how lefty acedemics have such a blind hate on for Harper that anyone who can string a vacuous sentence together that means nothing is another Churchill. Anyone who has actually taken the time to read his statements would find him much more hawkish than Harper and super chummy with Americans. Both of which are an anathma to the left. Well, say hello to the new boss, same as the old boss.

    • I’m not sure what you mean by left/right, but I think Ignatieff values science, believes we should do something about climate change (Harper says we should, but, I think he just says that because he feels he has to) and values institutions and the role government can play in social justice. Also, Ignatieff doesn’t have the religious control of other people thing going on (gay marriage, women’s rights, access to abortion, or just sticking god into canada day messages and such).

      I doubt Ignatieff is “much more hawkish than Harper”. While Ignatieff originally supporting the US invasion of Iraq, he never kicked up a fuss about Canada not being there (did he even think we should be?) and he has since said he was wrong. Harper was clear that he wanted Canada there, felt so strongly he made a point of telling Americans through Fox News and such that he disagreed with our government, and I have never heard Harper explain why he was wrong.

      Somehow, these days the left (if you mean the NDP) seems taken with the US, even though Obama is probably more right than Canada’s centre. Ignatieff does have close contacts on the Obama team and would likely work well with Obama – but I can’t see this fact bothering many Canadians.

      • Iggy is merely warming a seat for the real leader, Justin ( the lost GQ model)Trudeau. At least that’s how the last Maclean’s national article reads. Apparently he’s “someone with a lot of depth”, at least according to the half dozen times it’s mentioned in Werry’s piece.

  3. Get iggy to talk about puffins and you will be inspired (to regurgitate your food).

  4. “My business is to inspire you, but you have to know how much your presence today inspires me.”

    It’s true, there’s nothing more inspiring than someone who’s inspired by how inspiring I am. It’s called second-hand self-inspiration. Don’t try it without both Iggy and a fire extinguisher handy.

  5. One thing’s for sure, there will be no Iggymania like there was Trudeaumania or as we are witnessing, Obamania. There is no generational change here, Iggy’s 61 and will be 62 sometime this year. Heck that makes him 10 years older than Dion. Speaking of which, anybody will be more inspirational than that unfortunate orator.

    And Iggy’s politics is marked by a, how shall I put it, a realpolitik that accepts the world as it is which helped him promote and approve of the invasion of Iraq. He also approved of coercive interrogation techniques. I don’t know if he went so far as to approve of things like waterboarding. Personally, I find the practice of waterboarding beyond the pale in a western democratic society.

    Iggy may be a fresh face to Canadians having lived abroad all these years, but he’s hardly a fresh face.

  6. I found this quote in The Tyee, which is a B.C. left wing organ and the article is written by one of Iggy’s former students but I’ll assume it’s accurate “Nowhere does Ignatieff support methods like water-boarding,…”

    • Been a long time since I saw ” left wing ” and “organ ” in the same sentence. Ah, the good old days.

      Bein’ a ” fellow traveler ” and all ….

  7. Here’s a somewhat more nuanced view by Hugh Donald Forbes in a footnote at p. 245 on his book on George Grant, Iggy’s uncle:

    “Michael Ignatieff nicely exemplifies what is meant by neo-conservatism in the strict American sense. His practical utilitarian defence of a moderate amount of torture when ncecessary to achieve important objecitves is in the spirit of neo-conservatism. See Ignatieff, The Lesser Evil: Political Ethics in an Age of Terror (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton Unitversity Press 2004), 7-10, 18-21,140-1. Note that the currently controversial forms of ‘torture’, such as waterboarding, would seem to fall between Ignatieff’s ‘permissible’ and ‘impermissible’ categories, where the statesman’s guide must be prudence (that god of the lower world, as Burke said).”