Saturday, December 03, 2016
Michael Harris On The Demonization of Justin Trudeau
The other night Justin Trudeau turned up at an event in Toronto's Distillery District, bearing a bag of gifts to add to a so-called Toy Mountain for poor children.
And I was amazed to see how cheerful and relaxed he looked, after the barrage of criticism he has had to endure in the last two weeks.
With the Cons and the right-wing media going after him like rabid hyenas, for calling Fidel Castro a "remarkable leader."
And some progressives blasting him for his pipelines decision, and even calling him another Harper.
Which is not only absurd, it's practically obscene. Have they forgotten the real monster so soon?
But what that diseased demonization does remind me of, is the way some progressives in the U.S. went after Hillary Clinton instead of fighting the real enemy.
And by so doing helped elect a deranged demagogue with fascist tendencies as their president. Free to dismantle their country, free to strip away the human rights of women and LGBT Americans. Free to torch or blow up the planet.
Which is crazy.
So I'm glad to see that Michael Harris is also questioning the demonization of Justin Trudeau, calling it "bumper sticker" criticism.
Justin Trudeau’s detractors are doing their best to turn the boy-prince of Canadian politics into a dictator-loving tar pig.
And did I mention he’s also a “coward” to boot — the conclusion of MP Michelle Rempel, the CPC’s poster-girl of nothing in particular, if you don’t count sofa selfies?
Now it’s the sanguine work of cutting throats from ear to ear over single issues, whatever they might be — praise for Fidel Castro, approving pipelines, arms sales to a despotic state like Saudi Arabia. Anything that will fit on a bumper sticker will do. Trudeau Loves Dictators. Trudeau Lied on Pipelines. Trudeau is Stephen Harper with a Six-Pack.
And I'm especially pleased that while Harris feels free to criticize Trudeau, as anyone should, he believes like I do that his still young government deserves a fair shake.
In the end, Canadians eventually will decide if Trudeau kept more promises than he broke, or belly-flopped in the task of restoring hope in a political system widely discredited under the Harper Conservatives.
They will have to decide if he is, all things in, a better person that Stephen Harper or any of the Conservative leadership candidates looking to replace him. Hopefully their decision will not be based on loons chanting, “Lock him up,” but on a critical look at all that he has done — and not done.
And sees in the demonization of Trudeau an echo of what happened to Hillary Clinton...
Part of the assessment of the current government ought to include a clear-eyed appraisal of the alternative. Americans who who fell in love with the idea of ditching the political establishment did everything but consider what they would get in its place. It’s the curse of the iconoclast.
As a result, they now have a president with a permanent conflict-of-interest between his private affairs and public duty, a misogynist, a serial liar, a climate-change denier and a pro-torture Commander-in-Chief.
Which is just to say to all those bumper-sticker boo-birds anxious to slogan Justin Trudeau out of office before he’s really begun — are you really ready for the alternative?
While I stare at that alternative and ask myself these questions. Who is best equipped to keep those right-wing beasts at bay? The ones who are engulfing the world. If not Trudeau WHO?
Where would those frenzied boo birds, those old Trudeau haters take us?
Who do they think they're really helping?
And have they really forgotten our long nightmare so soon?
And the good news?
About ten thousand people crowded into the small Distillery District the other night to see Justin, cheer him loudly, and try to get a selfie with him...
It was an absolute love-in, you had to see it to believe it. So what happened to Clinton will hopefully not happen to him.
For he's no Stephen Harper, he's the man who destroyed the Cons.
So as the darkness of fascism descends on the United States.
In Canada the Christmas lights still burn brightly...