'It doesn't seem important. It is.' - Macleans.ca
 

‘It doesn’t seem important. It is.’


 

The prepared text of Michael Ignatieff’s speech to the Canadian Club this afternoon.

I’m here today to talk to you about Canada’s place in the world—how we’ve lost it and how we can get it back.

The world is changing, and Canada has to change with it.  Our identity as a people will be defined by the place we find in the world that is taking shape on the other side of this global recession.

Canada was born inside two Empires, the French, the British, and we have matured beside the most powerful nation in history, the United States.

What happens to our identity, our place in the world, when the centre of gravity shifts to Asia? When India and China become the powerhouses of the global economy?

We should have nothing to fear from the rise of these new powers. A new world creates new opportunities for Canada. Opportunities to trade, to learn, and to create the global architecture of security for this emerging new world. But only if we have leadership that seizes these opportunities.

Ce que nous faisons à l’étranger contribue à nous définir. C’est le reflet de notre personnalité. C’est le reflet de ce que nous pouvons apporter au monde pour qu’il soit meilleur. C’est le prolongement de ce que nous sommes comme peuple.

By and large, Canadian politicians scarcely utter a word about Canada in the world on the hustings.  It doesn’t seem important. It is.

After the last four years, it’s hard to remember how much Canada once mattered.

Nous avons aidé à créer les grandes institutions qui sont l’architecture du monde d’aujourd’hui. La Banque mondiale, le Fonds monétaire international. Le GATT, maintenant l’Organisation mondiale du commerce. L’OTAN.

Multilateralism was the Canadian mantra. In 1956, Lester Pearson found a way out of the Suez Crisis and made peacekeeping our vocation. When he won the Nobel Peace Prize the next year, the Nobel committee said “he’d saved the world.” We cheered.

In the post-war era, we became the world’s leading peacekeepers. Up to 1988, there was not a single mission that we didn’t join. At the same time, we went to war in Korea, the Persian Gulf and Kosovo. We went to war when we had to. We kept the peace when we could. Blue helmets became an emblem of our identity.

En 1950, nous étions là pour le Plan de Colombo qui a mis en place le premier programme d’aide international. C’était Pearson qui avait proposé que les pays les plus riches du monde s’engagent à verser point-sept pour cent de leur richesse à l’aide internationale. En 1975, nous avions fait la moitié du chemin. Et à Kananaskis en 2002, nous avons pris un nouvel engagement envers l’Afrique.

An engaged, muscular internationalism was not the exception for Canada; it was the rule. It was us.

What we did in the world wasn’t about one party or one policy. Under both Liberals and Progressive Conservatives, Canada led proudly on the world’s stage.

Pierre Trudeau a ouvert ses bras à la Chine. Jean Chrétien a fait la promotion de l’Afrique. Paul Martin s’est fait défenseur du G-20. John Diefenbaker a accru l’aide internationale et Brian Mulroney s’est fermement opposé à l’apartheid en Afrique du Sud. Par le passé, il y avait un consensus entre les partis sur le rôle du Canada dans le monde.

Malheureusement, mes amis, ce consensus s’est envolé. Pour le gouvernement conservateur de Stephen Harper la scène internationale n’existe que pour scorer des points sur la scène domestique.  Et notre crédibilité sur la scène internationale s’affaiblit en conséquence.

The Conservatives are giving up Canada’s place in the world.

We have a prime minister who thinks so little of foreign affairs that he changes foreign ministers the way he changes shirts. We’ve had four in just three-and-a-half years. They come and go with the seasons.

Our friends abroad see this revolving door. They note our silence in international councils and ask: Where is Canada?

Under Stephen Harper, we are no longer the world’s leading peacekeeper; we aren’t even in the top thirty. We are no longer among the world’s ten leading donors. Worse, the Conservatives have abandoned Africa,.

Quand nos services étrangers ne sont pas ignorés ou insultés, ils sont muselés. Nos budgets à l’international ont été coupés. Nous nous sommes même retirés de la diplomatie culturelle en laissant tomber la promotion de nos artistes, de nos acteurs, de nos auteurs à l’étranger. C’est notre âme que nous abandonnons.

Stephen Harper has so diminished our stature that we are struggling to win a seat on the Security Council of the United Nations—the seat we’ve held every decade since the founding of the UN.

Nous ne défendons même plus les droits des Canadiens à l’étranger. Ce sont nos concitoyens. Mais si elle s’appelle Souad Mohammed, notre gouvernement l’abandonne. Ce que moi je dis, Mesdames, Messieurs, c’est qu’un Canadien est un Canadien est un Canadien.

We were once the world’s great mediators. Now, in the Middle East, in Africa and in Sri Lanka, we have ceded our place to others.

Sous la gouverne des conservateurs, le Canada a renié sa signature au bas du protocole de Kyoto. Et qui peut dire jusqu’où nous descendrons si ce sont les Conservateurs qui nous représentent à la prochaine conférence sur les changements climatiques en décembre à Copenhague?

Under this government, Canada is becoming the country that dares not speak its name.

We still have the world’s finest diplomats. Louis Guay and Bob Fowler remind us just how tough and courageous our best can be.

We still have the world’s bravest soldiers, one hundred and thirty of whom have died in Afghanistan.

Aujourd’hui, nous rendons hommage au soldat Patrick Lormand, mort lors d’une mission hier, à Kandahar.

We still feed the hungry and treat the sick around the world.

Our diplomats, soldiers, aid workers—still distinguish themselves and our country every day, in every corner of the world.

They deserve a government that does the same.

Nothing seems to matter to this government—not the ascent of China and India, not the rights of our accused compatriots, not a seat in the United Nations, not the threat of global warming. Anything goes.

This is tragic. More than ever, Canada must see itself as a nation of the world, at home in the world. The world must live in Canada and Canada must live in the world.

To reach our potential our government must catch up to what Canada has already become: one of the most international societies on earth.

Nearly twenty percent of our people were born in another country. Nearly two million of us work and live abroad at any given time. We speak all the languages of the world.

Instead of lamenting these facts, instead of insinuating that someone who has lived overseas is somehow less of a Canadian, we should celebrate all our citizens. We should be more international, not less. More open to the world, not less. More adventurous, not less.

We need a government that catches up with the Canadian people’s own internationalism and inspires it to further heights.

This means asking more of our government and ourselves, not less. Raising expectations of our performance overseas, not lowering them.

Let me set out the elements of a Liberal strategy for a big Canada, an ambitious Canada, a Canada that leads by example.

Our Canada will champion an agenda of international governance reform. Our priority, as the host of the G-8 summit next year in Huntsville, will be to expand the G-8 to include the countries of the G-20.

And to ensure a truly inclusive global forum, we would offer to host and fund a permanent G-20 secretariat in Canada.

Our Canada will lead the world in rethinking financial regulatory reform. Our banking system, born of Canadian prudence, is the envy of the world. Our central banker, Mark Carney, is an exemplary public servant. We can take the lead here.

Our Canada will renew our relationship with the US. At a time when Europe is tearing down its borders, North America is raising fences between friends.  The number of visitors to Canada from the United States has fallen to its lowest level in a generation. The impact on cross border trade will hurt the United States as much as it hurts us.

Our Canada will engage with the Americans in strengthening not weakening the North American economic space.

Notre Canada assumera un rôle en Afghanistan après 2011. Un rôle différent. Ça veut dire un engagement humanitaire pour aider à construire ce pays et consolider les progrès durement accomplis.

Our allies have appointed high-level envoys to Afghanistan and Pakistan. Stephen Harper has refused. We need to be fully part of the effort to restore stability. Our troops have done us proud. Now we must commit our full diplomatic muscle to the same ends.

Notre Canada renversera la décision de ce gouvernement qui a renoncé à demander la clémence pour des Canadiens condamnés à mort à l’étranger. Si nous n’imposons pas la peine capitale chez nous, pourquoi devrions-nous accepter que pareille sentence pèse sur des Canadiens à l’étranger?

Our Canada will assert our sovereignty over the Arctic, not only by bolstering our air and naval presence, but also by investing in Northerners—their communities, their economic development, their health and education.

We must re-engage with the Arctic Council and foster closer ties with all of the Arctic peoples. Military defense of sovereignty is not enough. We must partner with our Arctic neighbours to guarantee progress for our Arctic peoples, a concerted response to climate change and orderly development of northern resources.

Our Canada will take our place as a Pacific power. We will engage with China and India, where Stephen Harper has turned a cold shoulder. We will harness the strength of our own diversity to strengthen our ties. And a Liberal government will bring back the Team Canada Trade Missions—which were so successful under Prime Ministers Chrétien and Martin.

Our Canada will make ending poverty a top priority, which means returning our focus to Africa, which the Conservatives have deserted.

Notre Canada, nous le voyons comme un représentant de la bonne gouvernance dans le monde, capable de montrer le chemin de la paix, capable d’enseigner le fédéralisme et la bonne entente entre les nations, capable de proposer des codes de conduite et de superviser des élections libres. À ces fins, nous établirons un Secrétariat de la paix, de l’ordre et de la bonne gouvernance.

The responsibility to protect was, in part, a Canadian idea—and central to that vision is prevention. With our record in peace, order and good government, Canada can resume its leadership in conflict prevention.

These are only some of the things we will do to return Canada’s voice in the world.

It isn’t Canadians who are the problem. Canadians are out there. The problem is this government.

Le gouvernement conservateur a perdu la foi. Il ne croit plus à l’action internationale.

Mais les Canadiens, eux, sont présents dans le monde. Ils voyagent et étudient à l’étranger en nombre record. Ils s’inscrivent dans des programmes internationaux ici et à l’étranger comme jamais. Ils sont nombreux à fonder ou à militer dans des organisations non gouvernementales. Ce monde, c’est celui des Canadiens, mais ce n’est pas celui de leur gouvernement.

Our lobstermen in Prince Edward Island want to sell their catch in Macau. Our forestry workers, farmers, and entrepreneurs want us to be conquering new markets in Asia. They are quicker and smarter than their government.

It is time that government caught up with them. It is time for the world to be at the centre of our national conversation, not the margins. It is time that we embraced a view of the world worthy of the country we love, the country I remember from my father’s time, the country we can yet be again.

We can do better – and we will.

Thank you.


 

‘It doesn’t seem important. It is.’

  1. Hmmmm….. Not bad. Turning Just Visiting into a comparison with Never Left Home. Not sure that will resonate with voters, though.

    • I suspect that it will resonate pretty well with new Canadians, such as the ones who populate the urban centres and the suburban Toronto ridings like Mississauga and Brampton (which are crucial to Harper's bid for majority now that he's kissed off any hope in Quebec).

      I continue to be amazed at this whole questioning of Ignatieff's "Canadian-ness" as a central plank. The one group of people who it potentially could really turn off (New Canadians) are a vital part of any path to majority for the Conservatives.

      • The Conservatives seem unable to resist peeing in their own well, at times.

      • You mean the voters that Liberals already have? And I think some of you are being too cute by half. People came here for economic opportunity, not the other way around. It's Canada where the recovery needs to occur, not China or India. Ignatieff is asking for a leap of logic that even his target voters are not likely to make. Only liberal-minded politicos seem to be making it, and Iggy needs far more than their support.

  2. We can do better Yes, yes we can.
    – and we will. We have to- either that or stop telling ourselves this story that we are the best, that we live up to our promises and our responsibilities- empty words, repeated till we can convince ourselves that they're true. When we acheive what we tell ourselves, we have great moments, and you can see what we could be. We don't have a choice- do better or watch the woprld passes us by and we lose any voice of moral authority that we still have.

  3. I see Michael Ignatieff has had a remarkable change of opinion about Canada's role as a peacekeeping nation in the last couple of years, after he expresed his disgust with Canada's "bogus" peacekeeping record in 2005.

    I wonder how long it will take Canadian journalists to ask him about this rather significant transformation in his opinion?

  4. I see Michael Ignatieff has had a remarkable change of opinion about Canada's role as a peacekeeping nation in the last couple of years, after he expresed his disgust with Canada's "bogus" peacekeeping record in 2005, before Harper even took over.

    I wonder how long it will take Canadian journalists to ask him about this rather significant transformation in his opinion?

  5. I'm not sure how he thinks we can regain our role as internationally trusted mediators without first reversing all the damage from 1990's Liberal cuts to Defense and the failure to meet our international commitments that followed.

    Same goes for the Arctic. We have to reverse Liberal damage to the military before we can defend it.

    Same goes for "We still feed the hungry and treat the sick around the world." Hard to do without the soldiers to make sure said food/medicine gets past the armed thugs who want to seize if for profit.

    And finally Afghanistan. Brave soldiers we have, but it's not good sending them on a mission when you're in power, and then decrying the mission once you're in Opposition in order to score political points. Said soldiers get the distinct impression that they are being used as political pawns rather than being fully supported in a worthy mission.

  6. I'm not sure how he thinks we can regain our role as internationally trusted mediators without first reversing all the damage from 1990's Liberal cuts to Defense and the failure to meet our international commitments that followed.

    Same goes for the Arctic. We have to reverse Liberal damage to the military before we can defend it.

    Same goes for "We still feed the hungry and treat the sick around the world." Hard to do without the soldiers to make sure said food/medicine gets past the armed thugs who want to seize it for profit.

    And finally Afghanistan. Brave soldiers we have, but it's not good sending them on a mission when you're in power, and then decrying the mission once you're in Opposition in order to score political points. Said soldiers get the distinct impression that they are being used as political pawns rather than being fully supported in a worthy mission.

  7. I'm not sure how he thinks we can regain our role as internationally trusted mediators without first reversing all the damage from 1990's Liberal cuts to Defense and the failure to meet our international commitments that followed.

    Same goes for the Arctic. We have to reverse Liberal damage to the military before we can defend it.

    Same goes for "We still feed the hungry and treat the sick around the world." Hard to do without the soldiers to make sure said food/medicine gets past the armed thugs who want to seize it for profit.

    And finally Afghanistan. Brave soldiers we have, but it's no good sending them on a mission when you're in power, and then decrying the mission once you're in Opposition in order to score political points. Said soldiers get the distinct impression that they are being used as political pawns rather than being fully supported in a worthy mission.

    • When did he decry the Afghanistan mission?

  8. I'm not sure how he thinks we can regain our role as internationally trusted mediators without first reversing all the damage from 1990's Liberal cuts to Defense and the failure to meet our international commitments that followed.

    Same goes for the Arctic. We have to reverse Liberal damage to the military before we can defend it.

    Same goes for "We still feed the hungry and treat the sick around the world." Hard to do without the soldiers to make sure said food/medicine gets past the armed thugs who want to seize it for profit.

    And finally Afghanistan. Brave soldiers we have, but it's no good sending them on a mission when you're in power, and then decrying the mission once you're in Opposition in order to score political points. Said soldiers get the distinct impression that they are being used as political pawns rather than being fully supported in a worthy mission.

    Ignatieff would have a lot more credibility if he acknowledged his own party's culpability in Canada's decline.

    • Without denying the need for a well funded military, is there a chance we could explore a foreign policy approach that doesn't involve shooting people?

    • This is tiresome. Trudeau outspent the "hawkish" Mulroney when it came to defence, both as a percentage of the federal budget and a percentage of GDP. Mulroney talked a good game — but do keep in mind he's the one who sold off our fleet of Chinook helicopters (through Boeing to the Dutch).

      Chretien, like every other Nato leader in the early 90s, cut back on defence spending as the Soviet threat diminished. Still, the air force got upgraded CF-18s and the navy new frigates. Even then, DND was given the discretionary option of spending on new gear or cutting back civilian and support staff — and they chose to keep non-uniformed staff instead of buying new gear. Martin bumped up the military's budget substantially, only being outspent by Harper in terms of C-17s DND didn't want and helicopters and naval craft they still haven't received.

      Since the 1950s, no party has had a monopoly on underfunding the Canadian military.

  9. A lot of very good stuff there. But the notion that Canad has nothing to fear from the continuing rise of the brutally oppressive Chinese regime is fantasy.

    And while it is true enough, that Canada is no longer a leading peacekeeper it is also true that we were no longer leading peacekeepers long before Harper was elected. And the decline took place under Liberal governments.

  10. Who's "We?"

  11. A lot of very good stuff there. But the notion that Canada has nothing to fear from the continuing rise of the brutally oppressive Chinese regime is fantasy.

    And while it is true enough, that Canada is no longer a leading peacekeeper it is also true that we were no longer leading peacekeepers long before Harper was elected. And the decline took place under Liberal governments.

  12. Who's "We?" Take the Obamabot impression elsewhere, please.

  13. Canada- as a nation, we have this mythos of ourselves as a great moral authority woven into the fabric of our national identity. It's reminiscent of the way that every year we say 'never again' about the tragedy in Rwanda, and placate our conscience over things like the atrocities in Darfur by token words and gestures. If we're going to hold up our record as a thing of pride- then so be it, and well should we, but at the same time we then need to stop speaking empty words and not live up to it.

  14. Canada- as a nation, we have this mythos of ourselves as a great moral authority woven into the fabric of our national identity. It's reminiscent of the way that every year we say 'never again' about the tragedy in Rwanda, and placate our conscience over things like the atrocities in Darfur by token words and gestures. If we're going to hold up our record as a thing of pride- then so be it, and well should we, but at the same time we then need to stop speaking empty words and not live up to it.
    And I didn't think that living up to our word, promises, and responsibilities was a partisan act, and I'm not sure I want to live in a world where it is considered ojne.

  15. Canada- as a nation, we have this mythos of ourselves as a great moral authority woven into the fabric of our national identity. It's reminiscent of the way that every year we say 'never again' about the tragedy in Rwanda, and placate our conscience over things like the atrocities in Darfur by token words and gestures. If we're going to hold up our record as a thing of pride- then so be it, and well should we, but at the same time we then need to stop speaking empty words and not live up to it.
    And I didn't think that living up to our word, promises, and responsibilities was a partisan act, and I'm not sure I want to live in a world where it is considered one.

  16. Starring as the principal mercenary in District 9 — none other than avr.

  17. The single new idea in here was for a G-20 secretariat.

    Yawn. Yet another bureaucracy. A good Liberal answer.

    Thank god the other members of the G-20 will no doubt show little interest in this.

  18. He didn't. His party did (to be fair, before his leadership). Point is, he'd have more credibility if he acknowledged the Liberals' role in damaging Canada rather than just blaming everything on the Harper Conservatives of the last 4 years. Canada's decline started well before that.

  19. He didn't so far as I know. His party did (to be fair, before his leadership). Point is, he'd have more credibility if he acknowledged the Liberals' role in damaging Canada rather than just blaming everything on the Harper Conservatives of the last 4 years. Canada's decline started well before that.

  20. It seems like most Canadian pundits are questioning the wisdom of a fall election. Iggy's Canadian Club speech offers some clues about why he might want an election now:

    1. He thinks he can run a strong "vision" campaign and win a minority.
    2. He wants to host the 2010 G8 summit in Hunstville.
    3. He wants to be PM during the Vancouver Olympics.
    4. He wants to run against Harper before the economic recovery is in full swing.

  21. In my view having a strong military already is a foreign policy approach that doesn't involve shooting people. We and those we protect are much less likely to get attacked if we have a strong military.

  22. In my view having a strong military already is a foreign policy approach that doesn't involve shooting people. We and those we protect are much less likely to get attacked if we have a strong military. The goal is deterrence. Shooting people is a last and unwelcome resort.

  23. In my view having a strong military already is a foreign policy approach that doesn't involve shooting people. We and those we protect are much less likely to get attacked if we have a strong military.

    The goal is deterrence. Shooting people is a last and unwelcome resort. The stronger our military, the less likely we are to encounter violence on our watch.

  24. You make it all sound so simple.

  25. Perhaps if you're thinking in terms of conventional warfare.

    I think the WTC shows that this doesn't apply so much when you're speaking of terrorism. And in fact, it can be argued that a strong military actually encourages terrorism over conventional warfare. This is bad for a number of reasons, including the difficulty of moving to diplomatic solutions once terrorism has begun, but primarily because terrorism typically targets uninvolved civilians.

    • In terms of foreign policy the mission would be either protecting the Arctic or peacekeeping. In the first case, it's conventional warfare. In the second case it's either conventional warfare or bands of armed thugs (e.g. Somalia).

      In both cases the prospective enemy wants to steal something without being killed, so a strong show of force can be used to deter violence while a lack of strength is likely to encourage hostilities.

      • Can you suggest any credible scenario where Canada would have to protect the Arctic from a prospective enemy through the use of conventional warfare? As many (rational and pro-military) commentators have pointed out, there is no military threat to our claims in the Arctic.

        • Where there are resources, there will be a military threat. The only reasons this is not currently the case are (1) because the treasure is too hard to extract, and (2) because the US would come to our aid. Both of these are changing.

          If a pot of money is sitting in the open, people will try to take it. The owner must either defend it or give it up. History shows this dynamic repeatedly.

        • Where there are resources, there will be a military threat. The only reasons this is not currently the case are (1) the treasure is too hard to extract, and (2) the US would come to our aid. Both of these are changing.

          If a pot of money is sitting in the open, people will try to take it. The owner must either defend it or give it up. History shows this dynamic repeatedly.

        • Where there are resources, there will be a military threat. The only reasons this is not currently the case are (1) the treasure is too hard to extract, and (2) the world's only superpower would come to our aid. Both of these are changing.

          If a pot of money is sitting in the open, people will try to take it. The owner must either defend it or give it up. History shows this dynamic repeatedly.

  26. Perhaps if you're thinking in terms of conventional warfare.

    I think the WTC shows that this doesn't apply so much when you're speaking of terrorism. And in fact, in can be argued that a strong military actually encourages terrorism over conventional warfare. This is bad for a number of reasons, including the difficulty of moving to diplomatic solutions once terrorism has begun, but primarily because terrorism typically targets uninvolved civilians.

  27. Let me set out the elements of a Liberal strategy for a big Canada, an ambitious Canada, a Canada that leads by example.

    So this is what we can expect from any upcoming election platform, is it? Curious.

    He seems intent on talking about his experiences in foreign countries.

    He also trashed the current government while listing all the ways in which we're actually doing well, such as brave soldiering, population with international outlook, and so on.

    He also seems intent on addressing the economy with vague promises about some diplomatic initiatives. Might be noteworthy, even desirable, but a reason to change course in this recession?

    I mean, this is what we've been waiting for from Iggy? This is why some people are so desperate to have an election, is it?

    Good luck with all that. I think he's going to need if — if we have an election, of course.

  28. Oh, I also forgot to mention his own previous positions on foreign policy which seem to completely contradict what he's saying now about Canadian values in foreign polices.

    In other words, he's inviting discussion on two fronts:

    a) His credentials being away from Canada for 34 years.

    b) Some of the very controversial views he's had during those 34 years.

    I mean, he can't possibly think we're going to have an election, which is why he's discussing these things, right? Right?

    Or is it that he's just so much more brilliant than those of us who have trouble seeing just where in the world he's going with any of this?

  29. Big on vision, huge on warm fuzzy adjectives, not many specifics. Of course I like the direction he takes here, but it's a compass bearing not a charted course. Enough with the "we will invest in our Northern communities"; we need stuff like "we will spend X amount of money in Iqaluit" and "we will buy two nuclear submarines" (or something specific like that).

    Also, he needs a new speechwriter. The cadences are too Generic Canadian Political. Give it some punch fer Chrissakes. Random example:

    Our Canada will take our place as a Pacific power. We will engage with China and India, where Stephen Harper has turned a cold shoulder. We will harness the strength of our own diversity to strengthen our ties. And a Liberal government will bring back the Team Canada Trade Missions—which were so successful under Prime Ministers Chrétien and Martin.

    . . . becomes:

    "The Pacific Ocean beckons. The route to China. The route to India. The route that Harper won't take. We've got Chinese Canadians, we've got Indian Canadians, and they can lead the way. Our Team Canada Trade Missions will be back, like under Chrétien, like under Martin."

    • I agree on the need for specifics. For example, it's one thing to say that we need expand the G8 to a G20 (although wouldn't that give Canada relatively less influence in the world, not more?), or that we need greater access to markets in India or China (while saying nothing about how we do this, or about human rights), it's another thing to relate to Canadian how this affects their bottom during a recovery and a subsequent recovery from it.

      I've said this before. Iggy needs to explain to Canadians why we need an election now, and none of this comes even close. It might be desirable policy. But is it a necessary current remedy to our economic needs?

      Then again, maybe he knew all along that Jack was going to cave. And, if he did, he will come out of it with new reputation for political shrewdness.

      At least he better hope Jack caves, given <a href="http://www.canada.com/news/Latest+poll+gives+Tories+point+lead+over+Grits/1993217/story.html">the latest from Ipsos. Not only would Iggy start well behind, but he'd be blamed for the election, too. And polls like this might motivate Harper to add in a last-minute poison pill to some of these ways and means motions. He has to be rid of those pesky dippers somehow, doesn't he?

  30. I had said earlier that Ignatieff and the Liberals would not be able to win this election on the cheap (with EI reform as their only issue). Speeches like this go some way towards defining the Ignatieff Liberals…and personally help move me from grudgingly supporting the Liberals in order to remove Harper towards happily supporting them.

    More Please.

  31. I think Michael Ignatieff laid down the message here…
    We need another election because – every day this government stays in power – it drags us – in some incompetent but clandestine manner – away from the path we ought to be taking.
    As to who are Canadians – we are the people other people want to be – we are the people that even Americans pretend to be – when they travel outside North America and find the Stars and Stripes causes people to turn away – they look around for a Maple Leaf to wear…
    I know – I have seen it happen in many parts of the world.