Speaking of celebrity candidates


It’s international Justin-mania!!!!!!

Nut graf:

To the party faithful in search of the lost Trudeau magic, Justin is the future, the one who can draw a younger generation into the political fold, much as Barack Obama has done. To his detractors he’s an inexperienced lightweight simply leveraging his father’s fame.

That paragraph sounds uncannily like a starter’s pistol. Over to you, dear commenters…

(belated hat tip: Joan Tintor)


Speaking of celebrity candidates

  1. I’m sure Dion has nothing to worry about.

    What is this “W” magazine? Pity that he would interview with a lightweight fashion rag and not with Macleans. I guess he knows his constituency.

  2. I was born right around the time that Joe Clark forgot how to count and Trudeau gave it another go ’round, so, everything I know of Trudeau comes from history books, biographies and political texts. He is too far to the left for my tastes, but I respect in him the same things that I respect in Harper (who’s a bit too far right for my tastes — we need a Goldilocks these days more than ever); Trudeau and Harper are both tough and exceptionally arrogant (all politicians are somewhat arrogant, seeing as they think they can lead people, but these guys are at a whole different level, and I respect that for some reason).
    I really don’t like the idea of Justin Trudeau becoming a serious political player. For the last 30 years, every Liberal has wanted to be Pierre Trudeau (in stature, not politics) and I would venture to guess that most Conservatives, while despising his policies, would love to have that stature as well.
    We really don’t need Canadian politics becoming the cult of personality that American politics are. Maybe it’s naive to think our politics aren’t already a cult of personality. I like to think that we’re still interested in intelligent leaders who are principled and want to do what’s best for the country. Would Trudeau fall into this camp? Quite possibly. It’s interesting that Justin is trying to play himself up as a guy who has veered away from politics for most of his life; I find that unlikely. I guess that it’s easy to question. I’d love to think that he’ll actually get young people interested in politics, but only time will tell. Once he’s shown himself to be a principled politician, then I’ll consider voting for him (well, his party). In the meantime, he’s certainly better than Ben Mulroney.

  3. If he gets elected, it will be interesting to see him square-off against Harper

  4. Justin Trudeau, Serious Liberal Candidate would be an excellent indication that the Liberals as a whole had just given up on this whole “the part of the country between the Shield and the Rockies” thing.

    Chances of it happening? Ten billion percent.

  5. Sorry. Macleans used up its’ Beautiful and Talented quota already with the Naomi Klein interview.
    Only so much space available between the Mark Stain love letters to Lord Blech.

  6. Sorry I keep coming back here, but I’m addicted. It’s sad that this seems to be the only blog I care about.

    I had to share with you the one comment on the W page regarding this article “Editor’s Note: The story is 4 pages in total. Click on the red arrow to read the next pages. Thanks.”

    Just in case you thought the print media was out of touch with this technology thing.

  7. Justin doesn’t have quite the intellectual acumen of his father, but he has the essentials of a good politician: family name, charisma, wealth, handsome. And to top it off he can speak fluently, not Dion-fluently, in both official languages.

  8. Blah, whats all the fuss, Liberals have Justin… Conservatives have Ben.

  9. The odd reference to Hemmingway in the title of that W article indicates that Justin’s genitalia were blown off in WWI.

  10. I for one was much more intrigued by the big feature on Dion in this month’s Field & Stream.

  11. He has to win Papineau first.

  12. In his summation of the qualities that distinguish Trudeau and Harper, D. Jones – either intentionally or unintentionally – echoes Will Ferguson’s premise in “Bastards and Boneheads”: that the outstanding Prime Ministers in Canadian history have been bastards. As opposed to boneheads, obviously. D. Jones even cites one of the mega-boneheads of all time in his contextual remarks, as postulated by Mr. Ferguson.

  13. I heard him speak- and he’s good.

  14. Sophie –

    What I like about him is the same quality I admire in other writers about politics and history: he doesn’t repeat the orthodox truisms. He takes what we think we know about something and looks behind the usual sources to see if they are accurate and if the interpretations drawn from them stand the test of reason. I believe the same can be said of Dan Gardner and the host of this blog, among a very few others on the Canadian scene who have reached any level of recognition.

  15. Well, at least someone there knows there is a Canada – it’s a start.

    Ben? Who?

    Oh, ya – as in Mulroney….Ben has been on TV and in the social circles and all…and no one has noticed him.

    Charisma anyone?

  16. The only thing that seems to be missing is any idea of what he thinks about anything. Not necessarily a handicap for a politician, but it would be nice to know if he has any ideas beyond solving world hunger and saving the planet from plastic water bottle or whatever?

  17. Brad,

    I’ve not read the book, but I’ve seen it in the bookstores; I think I’ll have to get myself a copy.

  18. Blue Clair :
    Everyone I know that doesn’t shudder at the thought of Ben Mulroney in politics doesn’t vote.
    Except on Canadian Idol of course.

  19. Everyone can hate on Justin if they like, but what you have to give him credit for, is that despite his family name and pedigree, he didn’t demand an easy riding and to be appointed a Libderal candidate.

    Instead, he fought a tough nomination battle which a large number of people didn’t think he would win in a tough tough riding held by a well know Bloc MP.

    You can even argue that his entry into Liberal elected politics was more dificult than that of his father, who was recruited by Pearson and given Mount Royal as a riding which is about as safe a Liberal seat as there is.

    If we he wins the seat, people are going to have to give him some credit and assume he has something going for him other than his last name.

  20. Bill Simpson:

    It seems to me that it’s better that no one know what you think about anything, then you can frame any issue whatever way you think will get you the most votes. That’s what makes it so difficult for people who have been around for awhile. That’s the real reason I think Clinton lost to Obama. What has Obama done? Nothing really. So, there’s very little to nail him with, other than inexperience, which most young people don’t mind anyway, seeing as all my friends seem to think they should run the companies they work for, despite the fact it’s their first job out of university.

  21. The idea of a dynasty based on charisma (rather than, at least theoretically, talent, like, e.g., the Martins) is galling.

    And Sascha is much cuter anyway.

  22. Dean P: Hell no. He does have charisma… and, as I said earlier, is a r e a l l y good speaker. Not a substitute for talent, no, but he hasn’t had a chance to prove himself yet. Give him time.

  23. Sophie: You may be right; I’m stuck down here in barbarian savagery (i.e. the US) where the current father-son duo is an unmitigated catastrophe.

    That said, I kinda don’t give a beaver’s ass about charisma. The Jeanfather wasn’t exactly the most charismatic person ever, nor was Mackenzie King, or any other of the great (mostly-Liberal) PMs. Mulroney and Reagan were charismatic, and look where that got us/them.

    Ideas first, personality second. Personality last, frankly.

  24. I have never heard anything from Justin except Suzuki-like hand-wringing about the environment. The rest of his output seems pretty vanilla liberalism. The original Trudeau, whatever you thought of his politics, was a genuine change from the federal political status quo and a unique personality on top of that.

    If the liberals are banking on Justin for the future, then they are genuinely out of ideas.

  25. Well, after a few or more years of stone-heart Harper — guess cuts to the arts, faux boasts of accountability, and getting divisive on the asses of non-Cons everywhere will be solving world hunger and a plastic-bottle choked world, right Sampson? — maybe Justin’s naivete and charisma-rich, experience-poor resume could be a real winner.

    But then again, i’d argue that he does have more experience than most boneheads sent to Ottawa now.

  26. I’d take Justin over Pierre Poilievre any day.

  27. Dean P; You have a point. Pearson wasn’t either.. but being able to speak can be very important. Tommy Douglas? Unbelievably awesome, fantastic orator, leader of the first socialist government in North America. Also never Prime Minister. I went to a youth forum he hosted in Montreal, and a few girl were swooning. Puppy dog charm aside, lets see if he has some good ideas before we get all worked up.

  28. To wit: Justin was hosting, not Tommy Douglas.

  29. Sophie, read your last comment fast.

  30. Dot Your comment made me laugh. I read Sophie’s comment as ‘Twit Justin was hosting’ and I assume you saw same thing.

  31. *sigh*

  32. Sophie: I just somehow stumbled onto the CBC recording of Mackenzie King speaking to the country re declaring war (after watching the really quite scrummy Jason Burnett over and over and over and over again). Hardly amazing oratory.

    Of course, in my fantasy, Justin would pick back up on the Just Society thing, but stay FAR AWAY from the Constitution.

  33. Yeah, fair point. No, as I said: a fair numbe rof our prime ministers (as well as most of the functional and cool ones) were, well, crap speakers,

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