It remains to be seen - Macleans.ca
 

It remains to be seen


 

Glen Pearson considers the weekend.

I’ve already spoken to some of my MP colleagues who were there in Montreal and I detect a bit more authenticity in their voice. The speeches galvanized them; the public participation alerted them; and Michael Ignatieff’s speech at the conclusion called on them to put the trite and political things aside and fight for issues that truly matter.  But that was in Montreal, not Ottawa, and it remains to be seen if the Liberal party can enact what they discovered about themselves this weekend and keep it alive in that most partisan and skeptical of all political spaces. Yet for one brief three-day period we witnessed the enemy, and it was us. Perhaps the true genius of it all was that we accepted all that criticism in good spirit, looked inward at our own shortcomings, and came out of it a little wiser as to our faults as public servants. The truth set us free in Montreal; now we’ll see how it does in Parliament.


 

It remains to be seen

  1. In terms of the net worth of Canadians, we don't need truth from the Liberals to be free, just reasonable.

  2. To see the dreary lot of attendees and keynote speakers, one remains cynical.

  3. "We suddenly peered into the mirror and didn't like our reflection. "

    That is the best encapsulation of the situation I've read yet. Kudos to Pearson.

    "Suddenly here it was: the truth, sensitively presented, but the truth nevertheless, and we experienced a collective kind of urge to put the pettiness aside and embrace the bigger issues, just as Liberals have in the past."

    Here's fervently hoping that the Liberals can do this. "Truth" is indeed what is at issue here. Many will say "what is truth?" and dismiss it. The question is whether there are enough Liberals with courage and common sense to say "there is such a thing as truth: some things are right, others are wrong, and it doesn't matter what the changing tides of society's whims proclaim. We are going to hang our hats on a few of those things and lead the way forward."

    You can't base your political future on "Canadians like fiscal conservatism with social liberalism so we're going to hew to that recipe." It works for a while, but eventually most people notice that you're following them rather than the other way round.

    • Only one will say "what is truth?" and she's driving me crazy!

    • Supposing truth is a woman – what then?

  4. Free to do what? Free to find a leader who actually knows what his MP's are doing and whether or not they are going to show up for a vote on the leaders own bill? Free to start looking for some principles to follow? Free to stop the endless Liberal Fear and Shmear tactics and start dealing in the House with issues that actually affect Canadians and are not just unsubtle attempts at finding faux scandals? Free to actually ask questions during Question Period and not the endless train of barely covered insults, false accusations and scaremongering? Free to actually listen to their grassroots members … somehow I doubt it ..

    • You know psiclone, other than your point on the house voting, every single one of your points is equally true for the Conservative Party. And that's a sad state of affairs for Canadian politics, no matter which party one supports.

      • this is where you are so wrong – You see I was a worker bee for the Liberal Party for years before during and when Chretien was PM and know what I am talking about unlike the usual Harper hating posts! The CPC always listens to us workers and responds accordingly not just throwing all of our work in the trash bin like the LPT does and I saw Liberal leaders doing this first hand at the Aylmer conference so don't try the usual responses – the LPT is a pale imitation of it's former self and deserves exactly what it is getting right now .. case closed .. maybe someday under real leadership it will return to be what it was but not with this current batch.

        • This background information provides great context for the anger that is found in your comments. Like a dejected lover, you must get revenge….

    • So they need a leader that will listen to the grassroots while simultaneously punishing MPs who vote against the party line?

      • I was trying to word that question! I'm glad you did it because I was having trouble. It's what I get when trying to rationalize complete nonsense.

  5. Can you picture Stephen Harper brokering such criticism in public?

    no

  6. Can you picture Stephen Harper brokering such criticism in public?

    no

    I also have my doubts about whether or not he would accept it in private.

    • Nor would he have the class to shake the man's hand after and thank him for saying "something his party needed to hear." At least, not with anything approaching sincerity.

  7. I have actually seen a politician shake hands with someone – who he couldn't cut in public – and wipe his hand on his jacket immediately he walked away (and – this was not Dubya in Haiti either).

  8. I must say it is good to see some Liberals openly admitting that the problem is with the party, as opposed to ignorance among the voting public. The first step in any recovery is to admit that there is a problem – I'm glad they're past the stage of blaming everyone else.

  9. The grassroots have been pointing the finger at the close guardians of the leader for many months Gaunion.
    It remains to be seen whether the message has really sunk in – both from our constant whining and from this weekend's event!!

  10. Nice to hear Glen chime in on this. As an aside – I wonder if he was cheesed at not being there? Then again, he was with Iggy for the one week tour prior.