Tuesday, September 16, 2008
Is it Time To Fire Stephane Dion...
...as the real director of the Liberal campaign? Because he just doesn't get it. I was glad to see him begin his day by attacking Stephen Harper's dismal economic record.
“We know where the Harper course has taken us. Our economy has hit a brick wall. So when Stephen Harper continues to say, everything is fine, to sing the old song, ‘Don't Worry, Be Happy, there is no bloodshed yet, he is ignoring what we all know. That the tough times are already here...”
But then I watched his news conference in Sherbrooke this afternoon and it was a mess. It was all over the place. There was no narrative. Every question was answered with a blizzard of mangled words. And sure enough before long he was rambling about his Green Shift plan. Or MY plan as he calls it over and over again.
Which is killing him in Ontario. Killing him in B.C. Killing him wherever he goes. And sinking his party's hopes.
And the reason is obvious. Dion is just acting true to form. He really does think that he is smarter than everyone else. He was that way when he was a teacher, he was that way when he "saved" the country with his Clarity Act. He is that way now.
So is Stephen Harper.The only difference is that Harper is a politician and Dion isn't. So he really shouldn't be acting as director of his own campaign.
Liberals say there are talented people in senior positions – Smith, Mark Marissen, Gordon Ashworth, Herb Metcalfe – but that Dion runs his own show, eschewing advice.
"Dion is in another friggin' world," says a Toronto Liberal MP. "I could go on ad nauseam about how he won't listen to anybody.
He's not a political animal and he just doesn't get it."
*Sigh* Surprise. Surprise.
Now look I'm not a Liberal. I'm for the Anyone But Harper Party. I'll offer ANY progressive party free and unwanted advice. But it seems to me that when a guy with no political smarts, no apparent comprehension of the need to have a simple narrative in this video age, and one who is actively resisting attack ads, is telling his geeky self how to run a campaign...in the 21st not the 18th Century...it's a formula for DISASTER.
And another nail in the coffin of the Canada I love. And whose fate is all I care about.
So I can only hope that someone in the Liberal Party, or preferably a whole bunch of them, can set the professor straight. Tell him The Philosopher Emperor has no clothes. Or better still tell the captain of the Liberal Titanic that the shiny object straight ahead is an iceberg. Not his shimmering plan to save the planet.
And that it's time to let the professionals take over. Like even Pierre Trudeau did.
If they do that now they still might still have a chance. If they don't they WON'T.
I know the professor hates simple answers. And mais oui life is complex. But dommage. In the brutal arena of power politics.
It really is as simple as that...