The central question


John Geddes offers an extensive review of True Patriot Love.

 Ignatieff’s attempts to defend patriotism as a motivation is more interesting than any stump speech. Without quite saying so, he’s finally addressing the question that certain highly educated, frankly ambitious Canadians have puzzled over ever since he defied their expectations by returning to Canada in 2005: Why give up a Harvard professor’s chair, a regular pulpit in the New York Times Magazine, a loyal British fan base-all for dreary old Ottawa?


The central question

  1. “Why give up a Harvard professor’s chair, a regular pulpit in the New York Times Magazine, a loyal British fan base-all for dreary old Ottawa?”

    Because he’s a typical, opportunistic, power hungry pol? I am willing to bet Iggy thinks he conquered the media and academic worlds and, since he was guaranteed power by backroom Libs a few years ago, decided he would grace us with his presence so he can achieve the heights in political sphere as well.

    • A prime ministership you say, old chap? Out in the colonies? How very drole! Pour another from the brandy snifter, this might bear some looking into…

    • Yeah, good one. I think most people can appreciate that ambition is an element in EVERY politician. But lemme follow: Ignatieff is an opportunistic, yet Harper & Co., are only in it for pure altruistic reasons? Despite Brodie’s own admission that the stupid GST cut was ‘good’ because it allowed the Cons to assume power? As if getting power is the end in itself.
      I actually find it quite galling how the Cons accuse everyone else of being opportunistic, such as during the mini-crisis in the fall, when Harper accused the coalition of being power hungry (ignoring thfact that he tried and failed to do EXACTLY the same thing in 2005).
      How about this: Ignatieff has had a career other than politics, and couldeasily fall back on it if he so decided. He’s not as desperate to get power as would be, say, a Stephen Harper, who has never done anything other than be a political blowhard and backroomer. When his political is done, he’s done.

  2. I look forward to reading this book (or Geddes’ review of it, for that matter) because have we ever had such a prominent politician with a book of his thoughts out WHILE HE WAS STILL IN THE THICK OF THINGS? I think this is a fascinating opportunity.

    And, just from this snippet, it highlights MY central theory that emotions need to be put back into history (even history of the future, as this is). Dealing with the facts of actions alone does not always give the full picture.

  3. You know, when you are a Canadian from generations back and do your genealogy, there is a patriotic pride – I’ve been doing my family genealogy and I now do not take my family or my country for granted.

  4. They’re after you! The global Liberal conspiracy is on to you Liberals Fail Liberally! Quickly, head for the hills and hunker down! Leave your phones and computers behind, the Liberals can track you through them. Also, lose all contacts with the outside world, or the Liberals will find you…

    Be strong little warrior.

  5. There are no bad comments only comments that are badly written.

  6. Geddes review offers a fascinating insight into the other side of the country’s relationship with highly successful Canadians living overseas. It has been a long time since Wayne Gretzky lived in Canada, however we happily accept him as one of ours for purposes of international hockey. What I took from the exerpt is that when Ignatieff was doing things for himself, it was natural to be elsewhere, largely because the challenges were there. On the other hand, when he decided he wanted to be of service, Canada was his country. This is consistent with the actions of many of the sports figures, actors, celebrities etc that maintain a Canadian identity but not a Canadian residence.

    • Well put, Indy!

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