It was a very sad and contrite looking Justin Trudeau yesterday, apologizing over and over again for his behaviour in the House of Commons.
And if you relied on our Con media you might think that his political career had been damaged beyond repair. Or that his sunny days were over.
But when I looked beyond most of the MSM, I found a very different situation.
One that leads me to believe that the so-called elbowgate affair will not only NOT damage Justin Trudeau, it may even make him more popular.
For although the National's ghastly At Issue panel was relentlessly negative, and summed up the reaction of many in the Con media.
I found a strange disconnect out there that suggests that the MSM is looking at the situation through a traditional lens, doesn't really understand why Trudeau is so popular.
Doesn't understand that it's not just about Justin. It's also about what he represents.
A radical change from the monstrous Harper regime, that traumatized so many people in this country...
And the deep desire of those Canadians to embrace the change and the hope Trudeau offers, and not slide back into the horror of the Harper years.
So I wasn't really surprised when I looked at social media, especially Twitter, and found that support for Trudeau was overwhelming, and that it was the NDP who was getting hammered, even by some of its own supporters.
And when I spoke to people on and off the job, especially younger ones, I discovered something else.
That many of them actually admired what Justin did. They thought it was funny, made him look like a very different politician from all those crusty hacks in the House of Commons, and made them admire him even more.
Despite or maybe even because of the way the Con media is portraying what happened...
Which did surprise me, because as I've explained before, I don't think it was a smart political move. I believe that Justin should have kept his cool, even though the Cons and the NDP have been attacking his family like a pack of rabid animals.
But then I follow politics much more closely than most Canadians.
And I thought that of all the MSM columns I read yesterday, this one came closest to explaining that phenomenon.
The international reaction has been, by and large: “Well, isn’t that cute? When Canadians fight, you can barely see anything happen on the video.”
Here at home, the incident seems unlikely to damage the Trudeau brand, either. He’s always shown a pugnacious streak, both physically as a boxer and in his tactics as a politician, and it’s one of the things many people like about him. He’s scrappy. He swears.
If Justin Trudeau were a character in fiction (which, insofar as we’re talking about him as a public figure, he almost is), his physicality and occasional boorishness would temper his usual handsome earnest cheerfulness. It’s the character flaw that makes him more well-rounded and likable. Does any of that make it OK for a prime minister to act as he acted on Wednesday? Absolutely not (as he acknowledged in his apology). But it explains why that behaviour won’t reduce his charismatic appeal.
It is a question of perception, a wild streak helps make him more than just the Prince of Selfies...
Makes him more human, far more interesting.
And maybe even as Thomas Walkom points out, a chip off the old block.
Justin Trudeau has done well politically by emphasizing his sunny ways. Wednesday’s events show there is a chippier, more dangerous side to his personality. In that sense, he really is Pierre Trudeau’s son. That will probably work for him too.
And it does explain why he drives the Cons crazy.
For the people who don’t admire Justin Trudeau, this stuff drives them crazy. Eventually, they tell themselves, everyone else will see that the emperor has no clothes. Yes, just watch him. But the more of Justin Trudeau Canadians see, warts and all, the more they seem to like him.
This frustration might help explain, in part, why the opposition parties reacted with hyperbole to Wednesday’s events. They are trying to get people to see that this is unacceptable, knowing that when it comes to Trudeau, the likelihood is that few people will care.
The filthy Cons who also don't seem to understand that the more they attack him like Rona Ambrose did yesterday, with an obscene motion accusing him of the "physical molestation" of the faker Ruth Ellen Brosseau.
The more popular Trudeau becomes, the less popular the Cons become, and the more they can expect to be attacked, by Justin's legions of supporters.BREAKING: @RonaAmbrose rises in the House to discuss the "physical molestation" of @RE_Brosseau by @JustinTrudeau https://t.co/d3fHmOc6Uq— Globalnews.ca (@globalnews) May 19, 2016
Which also helps explain why although the CBC's Power and Politics panel was also relentlessly negative, and we are going to have to do something about the grubby Conservative Broadcasting Corporation.
The end result of their ballot box poll was this:
Now isn't that a slap in the faces of all those ghastly Trudeau haters?
Can't you hear them screaming in agony? And isn't it a lovely sound?
Justin Trudeau, a leader in a far more complex relationship with Canadians than the hapless Con stooges in the MSM can comprehend.
One who embodies generational change.
And one who at this point at least, unless he becomes too boring or too much like other politicians, seems destined to govern this country for a long, long time...
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I don't follow social media so I had not realised that Trudeau's actions might have actually helped him. I did have the thought that it was not likely to hurt.
Trudeau seemed to handle things very well. It was a fairly minor matter and he immediately apologized, something many politicians fail to do and just dig themselves in deeper.
So far the Cons are doing well, at least for us. The more the hyperbole, the more like idiots they appear. Let's hope Ambrose continues her good work for the Liberal Party.
I remember the famous Chretien handshake in the park in Hull which did not seem to do him any harm at all, though the man he was choking was an amazing annoying activist whom almost any Canadian would have loved to throttle.
A great post that puts things in perspective Simon. The over the top comments from the opposition parties may work for the Trudeau haters but those of us who have endured their endless, asinine attacks can see these hounds chewing on their bone-du-jour for what they are.
The only thing I do regret is that the MSM seem to forget who provoked this incident and it's too bad Mulcair didn't take an elbow or two to his smug yap.
As a teacher/boxer/bouncer I'm not at all surprised at Justin's recent actions on the hill. Bitter power-less intern leaders on the left and right with degenerate stooges acting up in class hoping to get noticed in a contest for the next head bully is a recipe for more of the same. I don’t see Canadians abandoning Trudeau because he got a little muddied from trying to herd the opposition swine. DN
Maybe Canadians approve because they get as impatient with the opposition nastiness and shenanigans as he does. The NDP had an opportunity to fill the same role and work with the liberals to bring about some really good stuff and they are just acting up as a power play that isn't working.
You might be right. Not to say that Justin didn't jostle her, but the overreaction of the opposition gives the impression to people that it was in (hockey terms) a dive.
My favorite part of this whole fiasco is we got to see Harper smiling for the first time since he lost the election.
I love the National Post making Zapbruder films like next its on a scale of the Kennedy assasination.
I could not see clearly but it seems clear that Trudeau did elbow her but it definitely was a dive.
I just sent her an email congratulating her on her change of winning a Gini and pointing out that more such NDP highjinks means I work for the Greens next election.
I know Bill, the activist. Like me, he has been a spokesperson for social housing for many years. He has worked on many other social justice and democratic access issues as well.
That is a disgusting thing to say.
Justin proved that he is HUMAN! What irritates me is that people actually believe what ever MSM want them to believe! SAD!
From comments above and social media around the world, people seem to have the same general reaction. We can empathize with his frustration that day. We all make mistakes, this one will go in the history books of great Liberal leaders (middle finger from train, hand shake in the park). The con history book on leaders is quite a bit different (thousands of Gucci loafers, hiding in the closet, etc.)
We got it Simon. You're a big fan of Trudeau -- he can do no wrong -- and you despise the Cons -- they can do no right. (BTW, in the 2015 election, I left my progressive socialist convictions at the door and voted NDP).
If nothing else, Trudeau showed extremely poor judgment and his behaviour was, given the setting, totally inappropriate and inexcusable. Like a temperamental child, he caved to his emotions, his executive brain function failed to kick in. Hardly exemplary leadership performance.
I don't want Trudeau to prove to me that "he is HUMAN" -- I expect so much more than that from an adult leader of our country.
I think not only did it make Justin more popular...... It nailed a few more nails in the NDP coffin thanks to Nikki....... She really showed her ugliness and pettiness through this!!!!!! If she only had a brain!!!!!!!!!! Rempel must be jealous that Nikki is more ignorant then she is!!!!!!! They do not do any woman any favours by behaving like that. How can we expect equal treatment when you have female blowhards like that hitting the news!!!!!!!!! FS
In watching the video of the NDP blocking the member. It felt like kindergarteners acting up and the teacher had to get out of his chair to straighten it out. I have less respect for the NDP now. They have fallen to the Cons level of game playing.
politicians behaving badly. they all deserve a time out of 5 minutes. the NDP for blocking the Con, the cons for carrying on like it was a major event, o.k. perhaps the kid ought not to have gone over, but hey, he was fed up and I don't blame him.
the woman who is complaining needs to get a grip. she obviously has never been at a protest or picket line. an elbow here or there is nothing. I don't think Trudeau planned to "elbow" anyone.
people need to understand the Parliament is working on a dead line the supreme Court of Canada set and the fun and games on the floor of the house is out of line.
Position on Trudeau, not changed. The rest of them, unchanged. they're playing a game, which is how I believe many of them see their roles in the house of commons. they all need to try a day job once in awhile.
You left your progressive socialist convictions at the door and voted NDP? Lol. Ok. Mulcair was a fraud so I guess that makes some sort of sense. I think the people who criticize Simon's zeal for Trudeau don't quite grasp what the Harper decade was all about. Not one little bit. Yeah, Trudeau fucked up. But I'll take 10,000 incidents of that type of fuck up over what Harper and his grease-ball right wing ideologues did to this country.
By far the funniest one, besides the "cute" comment above, appeared on a CBC comments page:
"Trudeau, 2 minutes for elbowing."
I was once an instructor of (self-described) adults, so I clearly saw the teacher, exasperated after multiple provocations, correcting a bunch of mischief-making class clowns. I'm sure this view is reflected in the poll above.
I'm finished with the NDP too: both the Mulcair brand and the big-money Alberta version.
mulair the NDP Iggy
I'm not seeing the "radical change from the monstrous Harper regime" in the Liberal government. Their policies on the major issues and their parliamentary tricks to stifle debate are very Harper-like. Trudeau has a very nasty, vindictive side that occasionally bubbles up to the surface. The egotistical Liberals, like the Conservatives before them, pretend that 39% percent of the popular vote is a real majority, instead of a fake one brought on an antiquated, semi-democratic electoral system.
Please send this to all the Trudeau haters you know:
Except for wisest MP in the House (Elizabeth May) they rest were all out of order!
Can we talk about something else now???
I found the entire episode rather amusing. it certainly did not change my opinion of our prime minister. However, it further damaged my opinion of our media. Some were sharing negative stories from international news outlets thrilled that this might damage his reputation. How sick is that?
Time to get a grip! The 'elbow bump' was not intentional and in all honesty it was hardly enough of a bump to even have received attention. Also, it was her fault for positioning herself so closely behind the PM so as to get in his way and as she was behind him he had no way of knowing he would bump her when he turned. The PM has apologized for any harm he may have accidently caused and now it's time for the cry babies to shut the hell up!
B.BROSSEAU -Gérard Delte
ll - B.Sansoucy : connaissez vous la devise du Québec ( JE ME SOUVIENS ) ? Nous oui ! Vous êtes des CLOUNES !
hi jrkrideau...if Trudeau hadn't accidentally elbowed Brosseau, all he would have been guilty of is helping the Con whip escape the clutches of that NDP gang. It still wouldn't have excused his behaviour, but neither the Cons or the NDP would have been able to make political hay out of it. But yes, I don't think the Cons understand how much many Canadians like our new government. And by being seen to obstruct it or demean Justin Trudeau are only hurting themselves....
hi Dan...yes the incident did resemble to some degree our national game. Too many men and women on the ice, a dive if ever there was one, followed by a bench clearing brawl. Not the finest day our parliament has ever seen...
hi JD...thank you, I do hope it did help put things into perspective. Because from what i see Trudeau is the one being hammered by the media, while the NDP are getting away with murder....
hi anon...I can understand Trudeau;s frustration. I know if somebody attacked my family as the Cons and the NDP have been doing, I would have found it very difficult to restrain myself. But as you say both the Cons and the NDP are both in leadership races, and one hapless stooge is trying to impress the other. I think most fair Canadians will sympathize with Justin, and that in itself can only make him more popular...
hi anon...I have tried for years to get progressives to work together, and as you can see I have failed miserably. I'm afraid Mulcair and company have not been able to make the transition from opposition to third party. Which as you point out is unfortunate, because the NDP could do something more meaningful and better for Canada, than playing footy with the Cons, and looking like their stooges....
hi Omar...thanks, I couldn't have said it better, and I feel exactly like you. How soon people seem to forget the horror of the Harper years...
hi anon...excuse me for asking, are you totally blind or totally Con? Because if you're blind I feel sorry for you, but if you're a Con you can expect no sympathy from me. No government ever acted in a more dictatorial and disgusting way than the filthy Harper regime. Who I should point out used the same antiquated electoral system to demean our democracy and degrade this country for almost ten years. And BTW when we do change the system your Cons will be gone from the corridors of power forever. Sorry...
hi Emily...I would have found the episode quite amusing too, if the NDP hadn't tried to accuse Justin Trudeau of gender-based violence. Which was simply unforgivable. And yes the Con media has disgraced itself again, and once again shown its true colours...
hi bpeddle... I agree with everything you say. If Brosseau hadn't tried to impede the Con Whip, and was in her seat instead of trying to impede Trudeau's movements as well she wouldn't have got elbowed by mistake, and wouldn't have made a fool out of herself. And yes, it's time for the cry babies to shut up....
hi anon...4:47 yes I think that's how most Canadians must have interpreted what they saw. An exasperated teacher racing over to stop a bunch of unruly kids from acting like bullies, or playing silly bugger games...
Excellent response Simon. Not always happy with some of the government decisions......but the current government would have to really dig deep to match the ugliness of the Harper Regime. Yep, Trudeau is vindictive compared to Harper!!!!!!!!!! LOL LOL LOL LOL FS
Simon, I would like to read a critique by you regarding the federal Liberals stance on Israel/Palestine. Thanks, Gilbert.
Wow, it is like you didn't comprehend the article at all. How can anyone have read it as selectively as you seem to have?
Not really a proud day for Old Stock Canadians.
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