Sunday, January 10, 2016

Why Are Some Progressives Saying That Justin Trudeau Has Failed Already?

It's just been two months and five days since Justin Trudeau was sworn in as Prime Minister.

But already the Cons, the Con media, and even some some progressives are claiming that he is a total failure.

And while that is to be expected from the shellshocked Cons, and the equally desperate Con media.

I must admit it hurts me to see some progressives repeating the same nonsense.

Claiming for example that Canada isn't really back, that Trudeau is a fraud, because he he has broken all his promises, and hasn't done this yet or hasn't done that.

Or because he's refusing to break an arms deal with Saudi Arabia.

As the Disaffected Liberal does here. 

I have to admit that, like many Canadian progressives (real progressives, not the watered-down to meaninglessness type popular with so many Liberals) I thought I had misjudged Justin Trudeau during the heady first days of his administration. 

Sure it was obvious that he was picking at the low-hanging fruit, the really easy stuff that most of us, including a percentage of Tories, found repugnant. Yet that did create a mood of optimism and hope that it wasn't a mirage, that he would do Canada proud on the hard stuff just as he was on the initial housecleaning.

Barely a month in power and it's looking like it was all a mirage. This Saudi arms deal, 15-billion dollars worth of rolling death on wheels, shows that people like me might have been giving this Trudeau credit where it really wasn't deserved.

Which bothers me because although I have a lot of respect for the Mound of Sound, and I don't like the idea of selling weapons to anybody, let alone the Saudis.

I find it unfair to declare that Trudeau is a complete failure after such a short time in office 

On the basis of a single deal that he inherited from his mortal enemy Stephen Harper...

A deal that could be difficult and expensive to break at this stage, when many parts manufacturers are gearing up their operations. A deal that three thousand workers in one of the hardest hit manufacturing regions in the country are counting on to provide badly needed jobs for the next fourteen years.

A deal which if scrapped at time when Canada faces economic catastrophe, would hurt Canadians far more than it would the Saudis. But would help the Cons. 

And one where it's extremely hard to claim the high ground when we've been selling those types of armoured cars to the Saudis for almost thirty years.

The controversial $15-billion sale of hundreds of armoured personnel carriers to Saudi Arabia is not the first time the Canadian government has brokered such a lucrative and contentious sale to the kingdom. In 1986, during the Brian Mulroney government, Canadian foreign minister Joe Clark travelled to Riyadh to seal a very similar deal with King Fahd himself. 

The sale went through and today there are hundreds of Canadian-made LAVs running around Saudi Arabia. The vehicles now in production are merely to replace them.

And if it's all about those severed heads, the Saudis have been chopping off heads, and acting like barbarians, for twice as long as that.

So why the foaming moral panic NOW?

When Trudeau has performed so well under very difficult circumstances...

And why the mad rush to judgement?

When it only plays into the hands of Cons like John Ibbitson, the notorious Harper fluffer, who is also trying to take the wind out of Justin's sails, by claiming he's a failed conservative. 

If you closed your eyes, you could almost imagine Stephen Harper is still prime minister. Progressive voters who hoped Justin Trudeau would abruptly shift the federal government to the left once he became Prime Minister must be in despair as the new regime announces one conservative-friendly policy after another – further proof that when it comes to the really big decisions, the imperative of protecting jobs and the economy trumps human rights, the environment and other concerns in these difficult days.

So he can divide progressives, steal their hopes, and kill their dreams.

Because that's what I hold the most against those who are already writing off Justin Trudeau, even though he has only been in power for two months and five days.

They fail to understand that Justin has inspired a whole new generation of Canadians, like never before. Who see themselves in him, and who feel like millions of others, that if Canada isn't back yet, it is at least heading in the right direction.

Trudeau, who I remind you I didn't vote for, has earned the chance to show us what he can do.

And nobody has the right to kill the dreams of the young, and so many others, so quickly.

Or decide from some lofty throne who is a "real progressive" and who isn't.

You know for a while yesterday I was so discouraged by the sight of progressives fighting each other, I told a friend I was thinking of quitting blogging.

So a few hours later he cheekily e-mailed me a video of an old CBC sign off, so I could use it to sign off myself.

But after I watched it, I changed my mind...

Because it only reminded me of the country of my dreams, the one I have been fighting to reclaim for so long.

Let's join together rather than fight each other.

And let's see if we can make the New Canada.

As beautiful as that one...

Please click here to recommend this post at Progressive Bloggers.


  1. Anonymous10:35 AM

    Hi Simon, very nice video! Thank your friend on my behalf.

    This country is so fragmented now, it's very sad. Ten years of US style cons in our beloved country is a tough thing to change in 12 weeks. My foot fracture on Election Day gives me vantage as you may recall, check in 10 days by X-ray to see how it's healing. I think I have yougurt in my fridge that I bought when Harper was PM. I honestly think that yahoos and some reporters have absolutely no clue how hard our new government is working. If someone were to judge those in their respective careers and lives as harshly as they judge this government, they would be on meds pretty quick. If you've known anyone who has worked as a professional in the Federal civil service, you will know how tricky and complicated things can be. As such, public service requires immense dedication and very thick skin. I truly laude our new Cabinet and MPs. They, along with JT are doing an excellent job with a first class civil service (no thanks to Harper). Side bar: rumour has it Steve tried to get hired as an economist by Feds when he first arrived n Ottawa, he obviously did not get hired. It has been speculated by some this this may explain his bad attitude toward government workers.

    Simon, you must stay blogging, at least for electoral reform. If you have second thoughts, press "play" :-))


    1. hi TS...oh yeah I will keep blogging, and electoral reform is definitely my new target. Because once we get that I really can retire, and start doing some other things that time has prevented me from doing. And I'm glad you liked the video, it reminds me of a golden period in the life of our precious NFB, which the filthy Cons quietly mutilated. One more reason to stick around... ;)

  2. Anonymous10:36 AM

    I think your disappointment of progressives who criticize the liberals lie in your confusion of who they really are.

    Aren't these really just angry NDP'ers who are still smarting from their election disaster? I ask you are they much different than the angry and somewhat less articulate Harpercons?

    As you point out 2 months and 5 days is really not that long. Shouldn't these so-called progressives (i.e. disgruntled NDPs), be a little more patient?

    1. hi anon...I suspect that many are disappointed NDPers, some of whom are still so bitter it is clouding their judgement. I understand that disappointment, I did after all vote for them. But after what we've all been through, they should move on, make positive contributions, and of course help expedite the process of electoral reform...

    2. The problem with this where Mound is concerned is that he is a Green who has made clear his disgust with the NDP since long before the election regarding how they moved away in his view from progressive principles they once held sacrosanct. He is a strong progressive politically speaking, so he at least is not speaking from being a bitter NDPer unlike some of the other voices with similar sounding messages/POVs. Like Simon I disagree with his take here, but I do get where he is coming from if still saddened by his haste to call failure and more than a little bothered by the speed given I know he is old enough, experienced enough, and understanding enough of process to know it takes many months for any new government to fully find its feet and become fully operational and that in the wake of the multiple Harper process disasters that is likely taking even longer. That the initial focus on the refugees and tax cut in the first weeks almost certainly dominated everything else.

  3. To paraphrase Edward Longshanks from Mel Gibson's Braveheart -- "The problem with Canada, is that it is full of Canadians". Good luck to getting the nation back! De-Harperization is going to take a while.

    1. hi Omar...are you being negative again. And how dare you mention the name of the Hammer of the Scots AND Mel Gibson in my presence !!#@!!!
      And yes, de-Harperization might take a while, but as we Scots say, one day at a time, one head at a time... ;)

  4. Love that old CBC sign-off, by the way :)

  5. Percival10:46 AM

    Simon, I couldn't agree with you more. After 9 plus years of Harper's mismanagement, Justin Trudeau cannot be expected to turn Canada around in 2-1/2 months. Anyone who thinks that he can is living in a fantasy world.

    1. hi Percival...I know it's absolutely absurd. And they're either living in denial, or as you say, living in a fantasy world. Of course when I think of it as their second stage of grief, it gives me a warm feeling... ;)

    2. Anonymous12:13 AM


  6. Anonymous10:46 AM

    Trudeau will continue with almost all of Harper's major policies that affect people's lives. This is not because Trudeau is breaking promises; it is because he never promised to repeal Harper's policies in the first place. The Liberals supported most of Harper's policies every step of the way. Trudeau dazzled "progressive" voters with vague statements and vacuous slogans.

    1. hi anon...well we'll see, I think Justin Trudeau might surprise even his own party. But of course I don't have a crystal ball, and if you do could you please look up the winning numbers for next Saturday's Lotto 649? I've got to do something to try to grow my Harper pesos... ;)

  7. I wonder who did that CBC animation; it is beautiful (and I'm not a federalist). That gull is quite the traveller.

    One thing I do not like is the insinuation that younger people are necessarily more progressive. It is often the case, and social movements are usually driven by young people, but among the politicians with a mainstream following, two of the most progressive by far are oldsters Jeremy Corbyn and Bernie Sanders. And we've had some really reactionary young politicians - here in Québec we think of Mario Dumont.

    I don't think maintaining a critical stance is negative or divisive. We must not entertain illusions about the Liberal Party. And we must rely above all on the strength of social movements to put pressure on them - and even on the NDP, if it had been elected.

    1. hi Lagatta...look I agree with everything you say. Some young people are as reactionary as can be, and some people like Corbyn and Sanders are super progressives. Although on social issues polls show that younger Canadians are more progressive than many of their elders. You know when I was at McGill a bunch of us would head down to Vermont all the time, and have an ice-cream at the original Ben and Jerrys, and on at least couple of occasions we did bump into Bernie and I'm still dreaming that he could win the democratic nomination...

    2. Ben and Jerrys will be bringing out almond-milk ice cream! A boon for the lactose-intolerant (me, and most of the world's population) and for vegans. We always made jokes about wanting to make a swap and admitting Vermont to Canada and letting the Yanks have Alberta, but now that the latter have an NDP government...

      More seriously, our Vermont friends from Bread and Puppet Theatre came up to Montréal for our huge protests against the war on Iraq in 2003, and for other events.

  8. Should progressives be automatically uncritically of each other, only critizing the right?

    I don't even agree with those complaining about the arms deal, although I'm sympathetic to their concerns, but its important to critize Trudeau now that's he's won because politicians needed to be held to account, no matter political afflications.

    I enjoy your blog, but sometimes it reads like a fairy tale, good vs. evil, no room for shades of grey.

    You have this idealized fantasy about who and what Trudeau is, the truth is Trudeau is an opportunist, not evil, but an oppirtunist and that means if you want results from him you have to watch him like a hawk and hold him to account.

    I say this as a life long lefty, someone who wishes to nationalize the phone/cable infostructure, universal dentalcare, basic income for all.

    You need to stop demonizing the Tories as such cheesy charicture, some hateful monster to be slain, and try to understand them, to try see things from their perpective and ask yourself how did these people come to their conclusion.

    I admit I've done my share of demonizing liberals, but I'm trying to step back and view them in all their human complexity and I hope you'll do the same for the tories.

    1. hi Gyor...I am not trying to muzzle anyone. All I'm saying is that we should be still celebrating our liberation from Harper, giving Trudeau more time to show what he can do. Instead of acting like typical Canadians and building something up one week, and start tearing it down the next. And yes, I admit it, this blog doers sometimes read like a fairytale. But here's the thing, I LOVE fairytales, where good and evil are clearly distinguishable, and there is a happy ending. But as for not going after the Cons in my way, after what they did to Canada, and until I'm satisfied that they are not still the Harper Party, I'm afraid that's out of the question...

  9. Anonymous12:12 PM

    The rift between the progressives was always there and is precisely why we need electoral reform so the Retro Cons cannot drive up the middle of a split progressive vote.With ranked voting if the Cons do not get 50%+1 on the initial ballot the second and third choice votes will consolidate in favor of a progressive candidate whether it be NDP,Liberal or Green.I can understand why some of the progressives view the Liberals as Con-Lite but lets work towards a political system where we can freely express this without the 'fear' we are opening the door to another round of Harper-HEAVY!

    1. hi RT...yes, I need to read up on electoral reform, so I can figure out what would be the best system, because I'm really not up to speed on the question. But any system will be an improvement over what we have now, and any system that ensures that the Cons will never again have a majority government will be good enough for me...

  10. Simon, I didn't say Trudeau was a "complete failure" as you contend. I believe those are your words, not mine. What I said is we "might" have been giving Trudeau credit that wasn't warranted.

    I accept that the Saudi arms deal is murky. Harper said he was prohibited from discussing it. Maybe the Tories did ink that sort of Faustian pact with the House of Saud, I don't know. The problem is I don't know, we don't know and neither Trudeau nor Dion is offering any explanation even if it falls far short of justification.

    If we don't ask questions, demand answers, we become complicit in whatever the Saudis do with these war wagons. Years ago we could pretend the Saudis needed them for self-defence. That nonsense is gone. We saw what they did with their armoured vehicles in brutally suppressing the Shia majority in Bahrain. We see what they're doing with Western warplanes and cluster bombs in Yemen. We know of their duplicity in supporting murderous Sunni Islamist groups including al Qaeda, al Nusra and ISIS. We know from Bandar bin Sultan's remarks what the Saudis would so like to unleash on the Shiite Muslim world.

    It seems you would have us not look at these things, not expect some explanation, not see this deal for what it very probably is. It's unfortunate for Trudeau that it came up early in his tenure but that was entirely foreseeable and his chosen response was to turn his back on us, tell us nothing.

    I remember when Canada stood up to regimes like Saudi Arabia, when we even stood up to our friends. Just go back to that other Trudeau and how Canada gave safe haven to Vietnam war resisters - draft dodgers and deserters alike. Today we would rather roll over. Christ, if we can't stand up to the Saudis who will we stand up to? Apparently no one.

    From what we read, Trudeau will also bind Canada to the TPP, which I and many others resolutely oppose, and will support the expansion of bitumen pipelines running straight into the Lower Mainland. The idea of an armada of supertankers laden with such toxic stuff no one has any means - any means - to clean up is intolerable to most coastal British Columbians. That's a "when, not if" peril and it's unacceptable.

    It's pretty obvious that, if Harper was still in power, we'd be harmoniously condemning him for these same decisions. Somehow, if Trudeau does them, we should shut the hell up.

    Sorry, no.

    1. hi Mound...I'm sorry for using you as an example, but I hope I made it clear that what I had to say is directed at all progressives out there. But although as you know I have enormous respect for you as a blogger, and your truly impressive body of work. Don't try to plead not guilty to being too grumpy too soon !!!! For that was the impression your post gave out. When the truth is that Trudeau really can't, in the real world, do much about that ghastly deal. It obviously has a non disclosure arrangement, scrapping it would hurt Canadians more than the Saudis, and for Trudeau to scrap it at this time would be tantamount to committing political harakiri. So the best we can expect from him is for his government to keep criticizing the human rights abuses of the House of Saud or Sword. And above all to commit to never getting us into another deal like that one. It is true, as you point out, that the Saudis are on a dangerous rampage. But if the U.S. can apparently not restrain them, we don't stand a chance of doing that. Our best hope it seems is for a palace coup, that would topple the senile King and his two out of control sons, one of whom is aptly described in this article as the "most dangerous man in the world.

      And as you have pointed out, what Prince Bandar once told the former head of MI-5, amounts to nothing less than a vow to commit genocide against the Shia.
      But again what can we do about it? When anything we do amounts to cutting off our noses to spite our faces. So yes, ask all the questions you want, but always keep that in mind.
      And don't condemn Trudeau on the basis of that one issue. After the nightmare we have gone through, we do deserve to enjoy a few months of relief, and nothing is stopping us from pressuring Justin to keep the many other promises that he can and should keep. That's all I'm trying to say. We who rejected the Cons (notice I'm not using the word progressive just for you) should do more to encourage ourselves, instead of discouraging or fighting ourselves. For hope is the only way that we can push for the real change that you and I both want.
      So please don't take it as a personal attack, for it is not. And be sure that I still regard you with the greatest affection. Even if you are sometimes too grumpy... ;)

  11. "Why Are Some Progressives Saying That Justin Trudeau Has Failed Already?"

    I read a study once (which annoyingly I've been unable to find again) that while conservatives often felt they had more in common than they actually did, progressives actually had more in common than they believed. This gives conservatives a leg up in sticking together over the long term (but when the breach occurs [think 1990s] its huge. Progressives have a habit of bickering and undermining themselves over the smallest issues at a consistent rate.

    At the same time the narcissism of minor differences creates an unbelievable amount of conflict between groups of similar, but not exactly the same, beliefs. Watching anarchists (or so help us, communists) discuss differences in their beliefs might lead one to think they hate each other more than ideological rivals farther away from their views. The Liberal's position at the centre of the political spectrum means both sides will take shots at them as 'traitors' to their 'side'.

    "who is also trying to take the wind out of Justin's sails, by claiming he's a failed conservative."

    I seem to recall similar grumbling among Conservatives years back that Harper wasn't moving fast enough with reform. And setting aside for the moment the idea of a conservative wanting quick change, it does point to what Trudeau's problem is: you can't satisfy both moderates and radicals in your own party (or on the left) at the same time.

    1. hi Tory Pirate...yes I'm afraid you're right, progressives do have a bad habit of forgetting the real enemy and attacking themselves. I never do that, for the simple reason that no party in this country is as left as I would want it to be. So I have the freedom to support any party, and prefer to encourage them to work together for the greater good...

  12. Anonymous1:12 PM

    I agree with you in general, Simon. It's difficult to read the the words of bitter NDP'ers who are now joining the Cons in condemning Trudeau before he's been given any time to really show us who he is. I've been a life-long, card-carrying NDP supporter. No longer. I see the true colours now.

    1. Anonymous8:57 PM

      I'm with you anon 1:12. I'm not a card carrying member but have never voted any other way. In my riding with the Con now gone, I will be voting Liberal next time. I am sickened by some of the things being said and am wondering how anyone can forget what those Evil bastards did. And no, there is no "shades of grey" or "human complexities" . It was pure unadulterated Evil. Thank you Simon for keeping it real with us. And I love the comics. It's the only pic's of Harper I can look at, all the others should come with warnings, Pam

    2. hi anon...yes I've been very disappointed with the way some NDPers have reacted. Not all of them mind you, but enough of them to dampen my spirits. I was extremely disappointed to see how they spent more time during the campaign attacking Trudeau rather than Harper, and sounding as boring as bankers. Unless they can renew the party, I won't be voting for them either...

  13. I watched the sign-off a couple of times, and found it a bit odd that Ottawa (the Parliament) seems to be missing; didn't catch any city between Toronto and Montréal.

    Gyor, while I agree with much that you say, the Harper government had extremely authoritarian aspects that made it atypical of most PC governments. But I really don't agree with viewing critical thought as a negative.

    I don't think Trudeau has "failed"; it would be a ridiculous assessment after such a short time in office, and it also assumes that he has leftwing goals. The honeymoon will wear off soon enough. What is important is to hold the Liberals to the progressive promises they did make. This doesn't just mean criticism from the NDP and the Greens, but social movements taking mass action. From youth movements for a future to elder movements (about pension promises) and of course the growing First Peoples' movement.

  14. The Saudi armed vehicles deal is not as black and white as we would like to believe. Black and white was the mantra of Harper's Conservatives - "you're either with us or you're with the child pornographers", for example. It is disappointing, but probably not unexpected, that "progressives" would also fall for this overly simplistic "solution".

    Oh well, such is life.

  15. It seems to me Simon that the confusion lies in the question of what it means to be "progressive." I think one can only think of Trudeau as a progressive if you are comparing him to, say, Harper or someone like him. If we think in terms of the politics of thirty or forty years ago (before the victory of Neo-Liberalism) then the present Liberal Party is hardly "progressive." I can't really be disappointed in Trudeau because my expectations were so small. I had no doubt that Trudeau would be stylistically better than Harper, and that he would adopt a few policies that were more conducive to an democratic civil society. Don't get me wrong, this is important. But that is where my expectations stayed. Let us admit that some of the things Trudeau will do are good and important, but over the next four years let us also not ignore the LPC's Neo-Liberal tendencies and their failure embrace the necessary economic changes to curtail the globalizing capitalism that is destroying things (because it would be folly to think that the present Liberal Party is really interested in reforming capitalism).

    1. Absolutely. I guess there is no point in arguing with people who are supposedly on the left who say they'll be voting for the Libs; after a few months they'll see that it is capitalist business as usual except for some of the most authoritarian and obscurantist aspects of the horrible Harper régime (I think even Angela Merkel, no leftist, thought Harper was nuts - especially the anti-science stuff). The other problem is how far right the NDP leadership had veered, and the very short leash it kept on truly progressive NDP MPs. I've heard absolutely nothing from my MP since his thanks to the volunteers and congratulations to the winning party. This is very unlike him; he usually sends out news and clips at least once a week.

      Since I live a few minutes' walk south of Trudeau's riding (which starts just north of Jean-Talon Market) and have long been a member of the tenants' association in that riding, where I used to live, we've seen Trudeau up close for some time now and illusions in him are less for that reason.

    2. hi Kirby...I realize that the word progressive can mean many things to many people. But I'm talking about what it means in Canada, which is a very centrist country, and the only one where the NDP could end up to the right of the Liberals. My views are to the left of any party in this country, but I'm not ruling out the chance that Justin Trudeau could surprise a lot of people, even his own party. Because he does represent generational change, and I think he is his own man. But we'll see. What I object to at this point is declaring that the battle is over already, and plunging back into the gloom from where we just emerged. I just couldn't handle that, and Trudeau does deserve more time to show us what he can do....

    3. Anonymous10:07 PM

      I can't imagine any definition of "progressive" that includes no-strings-attached corporate tax cuts and subsidies, international trade/investment deals that only benefit corporations and screw everyone else, "middle class" tax cuts that only benefit the upper-upper-middle class and give absolutely nothing to Canadian workers who make the average income or lower, etc. The NDP has not ended up, nor will it ever end up, to the right of the Liberals. Regardless of what happened during the campaign, the Liberals, in their actions, will prove yet again that they are a right-of-centre, corporate elitist party.

  16. view from my porch
    tax tiddling ...if you earn 200 k you get 1500 more
    if your under 44 k you get zero ...ty jt
    promised 10% increase to oas ....shelved
    f-18s still bringing sunshine to those too old or sick or poor to run
    endless refugee selfies ...and i have no answer to our homeless
    crowd control vehicles enhancing our prosperity over the lives of others
    no brakes on the tpp deal
    lip service at the global warming paris deal
    and no words out of jt's mouth about any of it about how or why
    harpers legacy and the 72 cent loonie and 40 buck oil
    have a real good chance of driving this honeymoon into the ground
    but i'm with ya
    whistle in the dark
    sunny days

    1. hi lungta...yes there are so many problems coming at us from every direction it will be hard to preserve those sunny days. But the only way to defeat them is remaining strong and hopeful, for if we don't we will just slip back into the same gloom from whence we recently emerged, and I never want to be in that hopeless place again...

  17. e.a.f.2:36 AM

    why? because people had very high and unrealistic expectations. they thought the minute Trudeau and the Liberals were elected everything would change. What needs to change will take time. people need to understand real life is not a t.v. show where the president/p.m. solves all the problems in one hour and then has time to go out for the evening.

    To change legislation takes time. It has to be written and the people who do the writing work 7 1/2 hour days and go home at the end of the day. it takes more than one person to write legislation. then it has to go to the lawyers, the PMO, the cabinet, treasury board, etc. Holy Hell, the budget hasn't even been brought down. It takes time. people need to get a grip. They might also want to sit down and figure out how they are going to help change things.

    Until parliament sits there won't be a lot happening. Yes, I too want the Saudi deal cancelled and I want it cancelled last week. I do realize though, there needs to be some things looked at, not the least of them being, what do the lawyers have to say. How would a lawsuit in the Hague work out for Canada? What spin off effects could there be, if the deal was cancelled. Most of these things are never simply no matter how much we would like them to be.

    It maybe that we are legally stuck with the deal. If that is the case, then we need to know and just make sure our country never signs another deal like it.

  18. Re: the Saudi arms deal, I have been told that the Canadian factory is a subsidiary of an American Corporation, and to cancel the deal could lead to litigation claims under free trade reaties that may stretch into the billions. I have not researched this, but 1 possible explanation. Trudeau never suggesed he would scrap the TPP nor Bill C-51. He does intend to try to amend them. What I find of more import at the moment is the pressure to hold a referendum on Electoral Reform, which you are doing a good job of keeping me informed about. Thank you Simon.

    1. hi Filcher...I wouldn't be surprised if the Cons have agreed to all kinds of things to make it really hard and expensive for any future government to undo what was signed. I'll never forgive them for getting us into this mess, but the important things is that it never happens again....

  19. As the anarchists used to say, "If voting would change anything...They would make it illegal" However even most of them got involved in voting during the last election due to the dire and embarrassing situation Canadians were in with a right wing(nut) government which was a global joke. There are stages to change. Trudeau and the Liberals on their own do not represent the change we need. They will have to be coaxed to continue to move the pendulum forward and criticized when they try and move things backward. If the NDP had won the election we would probably be in exactly the same place and perhaps, due to the federal NDP's fear of making progressive decisions perhaps even further behind. The NDP need to reinvent themselves but they are all in hiding. We need to move the Trudeau Liberals to the left whenever we can. We have to be critical in order to push the agenda forward. We cannot wait and expect that change will be forthcoming. The Cons know that full well. That's why they suddenly are pushing the Libs on the Saudi arms deal. Hypocrisy be damned! There are votes in these positions! If the paywalled article from Ibbotson is in context here "when it comes to the really big decisions, the imperative of protecting jobs and the economy trumps human rights, the environment and other concerns in these difficult days." (I would not pay the Globe a nickel for anything)
    that statement is the real evil. Nothing should EVER be allowed to trump human rights or the environment. It is that kind of thinking we have to continue to fight. We need our environment and when human rights are abused we get fascism. Simon, please keep up the blogs because the sunny days will soon be over, but the struggle for our future will always be ongoing. We need more than an election to make change. We need the constant pressure that exposing their agenda places upon the 1%. We need to create a society where human rights and the environment are the key issues. Then and only then will our dirty arms deals with fascist kingdoms ever end.

  20. I'm no too happy with:

    1. Our country Canada looking out for the migrants from Syria before addressing the problems going on up north on native reserves (the people Canada belongs to)

    2. Trudeau taking no military action in the Philippines towards the radicals who have kidnapped Canadians and beheaded one. If it was up to me I would tell the radicals we arent giving them money and we are on our way to take our citizens back unharmed or else we will severley attack their region to send a clear message, Canadian Citizens are not to be held as hostages.

    3. He hasn't personally gone to Fort McMurray instead he's in Toronto announcing a Billion dollar budget for John Tory's bad country bumpkin transport ideas for Toronto.

    Glad I didn't vote for this space cadet.

  21. Anonymous10:37 PM

    Harper is very well matured very calm & not childish and arrogaont like Justin, this is why, right from the begining the adds were going the media "Justin" is not ready.Soon after Justin won the election his speech was very prideful, boasting, and when Harper won the election in 2011 he said to his mps to stay humble, see the two different qualities.Justin attcked conservertive mps on the scandal, and now he is repeaing, What Justin has sowed he has to reap,moreof his failiures to come- 19th May 2016

  22. Anonymous6:34 PM

    Liberals in power,& Justin being the prime miniter,is heading for scary distruction in the soil of Canada,Fort McMurray is an example,and the economy of Canada with a billions dollars deficit,expecting an increase to Trillions would lead the people who voted for Liberals to regret which would be too late to realize.
    Before completion of one year in parliment by Oct 19 2016 the Liberals would see their unexpected failures.This is all because of their liberal horrible policies."Justin" let your heart bless Israel or else the consequences are going to be very negative.....

  23. Anonymous11:06 PM

    News from G8
    Abe and Trudeau urged their fellow leaders to foreswear austerity and, among other growth-inducing measures, spend money to stimulate the world economy.

    They failed. Italy’s Matteo Renzi was on side with Canada and Japan, as were France’s François Hollande and U.S. President Barack Obama.