Friday, January 30, 2009

Trudeau, Visionairy or Mad Social Engineer?

My last post got me to thinking this morning. I do my thinking in the morning usually, once the fog clears. In the "Last Post", pun fully intended, I touched on what it was that once made the Liberal Party attractive to so many Canadians and this morning I thought that might be a subject worth pursuing.

I am beginning to think that much of their success in recent decades comes from an aura associated with the Party, not so much one of natural governing party, but one that began during the Trudeau years. A certain magic if you will, where love him or hate him, Trudeau defined the Liberal Party as a Party of the People. A Party that associated itself with new trends and mindsets, and above all else, a Party that was progressive and on the side of the People. The Street People.

If one is going to discuss the merits of Trudeau's years, or the perceived successes and failures, this could be a lengthy discussion. Particularly if any of the Conservative supporters were to show up. Hindsight of course being as it is, allows for a much clearer picture than looking ahead to the year of the Ox. Many of the programs implemented during Trudeau's years in government, both the Pearson years and his own governments, have become pillars in what we now view as Canadian Society. Still, depending on political allegiance, many love to pick and howl about what they percieve as bad, while at the same time not giving a moments thought to how PO'ed they would be if any of the entrenched programs that came from that time were eliminated. Kind of a short view of things really.

Moving on from thoughts of official bilingualism and NEP and back to my main point, the aura. Trudeau was seen by many as a champion of the little people, and not a representative of big corporations and old world power. Certainly, he had to deal with those aspects too, but managed that and brought forward many forward thinking programs at the same time. Costly yes, but forward thinking just the same. One also has to consider that everything begins somewhere, and unless it remains under the stewardship of the same people, it will change and evolve. As did both major considerations above. It is up to subsequent generations to determine what becomes of the original ideas and programs. Even in cases such as the NEP, remnants remain. So does the concept and the knowledge that it can be done.

Contrast all of this with the new guy, Mr. Nowhere Man. Think Beatles song. Even the bright minds of the Liberal blog world have come to see it as it is. Either accept this guy who keeps contradicting himself when he does speak, or stand apart in a second sphere of liberalism. Looks to me like a lot have chosen to go that way, and a lot more are sitting on the fence playing in both worlds so as to be sure they are not out of the loop at the end of it all. Those are the politicos whose skin can be shed quickly as necessary.

Mr. Nowhere Man seems conflicted on just about everything as in his quest to not take positions that may stick to him in the future as some of his past positions have, he comes across as indecisive by design. Guns or Roses? At least with Harper, we know it's Guns, he has made that clear. But he's not so bright. Right?

As long as Mr. Iggnatieff and organizers play peek a boo with this, Canadians wait for the real Mr. Iggnatieff to please stand up. I say who needs it? Play the game if you wish, but some of us can see through it. Pick a persona, take a stand, stand up and be counted. As it is, you are a long way away from the aura. Trudeau would likely disapprove too.

I'm not going to run on endlessly about this, but I wonder about placating oneself with the thought of changing generic soda pop A for generic soda pop B, and how is it exactly that one gets their passions all in a whirl over such thoughts? And the Great Canadian Society awaits the winner by default. Continuing on the path of being Nowhere Man, brings thoughts of another Trudeau era politician, Bob Stanfield. There are similarities and differences. The greatest similarity is that neither could be perceived to have the fire in their bellies. The differences were background and that Stanfield actually had positions, and made them clear for people to understand.

To bring this mornings musings to a conclusion, I will offer this for your consideration. Ringo Starr; It Don't Come Easy.


  1. I normally don`t move conversations up threads but this one seems very relevant to this new thread. It harkens back to GT in 2007 when I asked the crew to identify something the feds had done right over the last 40 years. Only Herb recently was strong enough to list a couple of good things they screwed up. Ah how reality bites

    btw the question is still open, what has our elected federal government done right in the last 40 years?

    Linda said...

    Also, my concern with Harper et al not upholding rules and laws

    poppavox said...

    There comes a tipping point when lies make up the bulk of governance, governance fails. We passed that point decades ago.
    Linda said...

    I agree Poppavox- all Parties. And the tipping point being passed decades ago.

  2. Linda said...
    McCain/Palin calling Obama a Socialist?

    Another comment worthy of this thread. Trudeau is often referred to as a Marxist and it looks very much like Obama is taking the US in that direction.
    Trudeau gave us the Charter turning our democratic rights over to a handful of unelected unaccountable lawyers that view the Charter as a white painting only they can see the hidden message.
    Even though there is no text advocating discrimination the 1987 SCoC d that fathers have no rights shows the Charter is obviously discriminatory.
    The same goes with the US VAWA, there is no text advocating discrimination yet cases of VAWA used to discriminate are becoming a dime a dozen. The latest addition to laws that fall into that category that will be used to discriminate is the Ledbetter Act.
    It just struck me, the first black US President signs his first Bill,,, that will promote discrimination.

  3. Robert, the thread is more about the Aura, or the Messiah like qualities of a Trudeau and how a following results from that. Plus the fact that Ignatieff doesn't have that. Nothing even close. That in fact he more represents generic soda B. Harper being generic soda A. An example of that is this controversy on freedom of speech and 13.1. The CPC party resolutions and Harper's recent words which basically maintain status quo. I'm not going to get into that discussion, because like many of the Trudeau policies it has been convoluted by special interest groups and no longer represents the essence of discussion on free speech.

    Also, I'm not a constitutional expert nor aware of US VAWA, so I can't contribute anything on those either.

    Special interest groups are often a major problem, as they are one's who speak loudest and most often, therefore influencing the outcome of policy. Such as the case of 13.1. and of Father's rights, gay marriages, child support and up to and including the official positions taken by our government during meetings of UN sanctioned bodies. Embarrassing as they may be, it is the special interest groups who are heard and often ruin the good intentions of specific policies.

    Another example might be official bilingualism. I don't think Trudeau's intent was for Quebec to further polarize itself. I believe it was the opposite, but that it was hijacked by those with special interests. Their own. i.e. Clergy, old Quebec money, new age politicos and a myriad of other miscellaneous twits. Some of which were more than happy to grind the axes of old hatreds. Some were just little men by anyone's standards. Take Rene Levesque for example.

    As for going off topic, that isn't a big concern on this little blog. Some of the best discussions I have had over the years began with talking about how Trudeau's policies brought about Agricorp, and ended up discussing Ghandi's success in gaining independence. ??? With a dash of Churchill along the way maybe.

    I just pick a subject that is of some interest to me, and maybe to others, post it and go from there. They are intended to encourage others to express their thoughts and views.

  4. 'Mr. No-Where Man'~ that's a good one, Comrade:} He's NO Trudeau!! I have to go now but will talk to you later, about the aura of that man for the PEOPLE! (That's what Cons don't like-the common good.) And I have questions for you too, Robert, ok?

  5. Comrade One said...
    Robert, the thread is more about the Aura, or the Messiah like qualities of a Trudeau

    In my defense of said opinion, not counting the NEP, the Marxist persona many gave Trudeau was far from a messiah west of the Ontario border. I mentioned Obama because of his messiah aura as well as the similarities between the two in their political actions in promoting discrimination verses the political aura.
    Still I hear you so I`ll only post a philosophical in the future rather than giving a pragmatic event based view on mad social engineering.
    And I have questions for you too, Robert, ok?
    Gulp,,, lol np ask away.

  6. You can post on off topic subjects if you want Robert, that's what I said, but you are going to have to expand on the discrimination, Ledbetter etc. and how Obama fits into all that.

    If I catch your drift, I would say this or more Bushenomics and faux wars. Which steaming heap of dung would you prefer?

  7. "you are going to have to expand on the discrimination, Ledbetter etc. and how Obama fits into all that."
    I thought I was on topic, like I said I`ll try to leave the facts out of future philosophical discussions, my apology.
    I thought I made it clear how the Charter promotes discrimination. While it may be legal for the Charter to deny fathers rights, childrens rights are protected by the Charter. By denying children a parent it is unconstitutionally denying children their right to both parents. The use of the Charter and VAWA along with other legislation is used to discriminate, the Ledbetter Act fits into this category.
    On which dung heap as I`ve said I don`t see how the outcome would be any different under any Party or person and as our system is broken with Obama is taking the US toward where we are seems again on topic.

  8. The header mentions Trudeau, and the body discusses Ignatieff, Trudeau and even mentions Stanfield and Levesque, so how children's rights, VAWA and Ledbetter are in keeping with that, I don't know. Whatever. I don't think the topic is about being on topic. That much I know for sure.

    Regarding making it clear how the charter promotes discrimination, you are referring to other threads on other blogs? I don't remember seeing anything on that here.

    If you want to expand on how the charter promotes discrimination, have at it.

    And you might think that Bush was an ok guy, but I don't share your opinion on that. I think his legacy speaks for itself. Wee Willy Winky had his issues, but at least the economic house didn't burn down on his watch.

  9. I rather thought my responses tied completly into mad social engineering, obviouly I`m way off the mark.
    Discusion here won`t change anything anyway so i`ll let yall have you`re own political and obviously partisan discusion.

    Happy trails


  10. Poppavox? Please, could I ask you something? I was too young to know much of Trudeau, I heard my family talk about him, (the ladies loved him.) I listened over the years to others and learned what I could. I had a friend/neighbour once who thought Trudeau was a mad social scientist. We had many a debate. He is now posting under another name at GT's making the same argument, with the same words,haha:) So I guess my question is would you rather have a PM or Leader fight for the People or fight for the vote? I am so sick of constant electioneering, while this World is economically & environmentally falling like a house of cards. Forget about justice. It is one big Ponzi Scheme. They should A L L be up on racketeering charges, where's RICO? Liars and thieves they are; and the people need justice.

  11. buddy, spare a dimeJanuary 30, 2009 at 7:17 PM

    Hi Linda,

    If you have any other questions email me, I`d rather not be plugging up a thread.

    "would you rather have a PM or Leader fight for the People or fight for the vote?'

    I would rather have a leader fight for the vote with a viable plan, honestly and with integrety

    "the people need justice"

    no justice, no investment

  12. Trudeau's career was about enabling Canadians to take control over their lives. The state got out of their bedrooms. The state could no longer interfere with their human rights. Power was being transferred to the people. Trudeau, on the surface the most elitist of all Canadian prime ministers, turned out to be the most important populist in the country's political history - baffling to many because he was so far ahead of his time, popular in retirement, and despite himself, because he had captured the spirit of the age.

    Michael Bliss, Right Honourable Men, Toronto, 1994, p. 274.

  13. It is a rare politician who stirs as many people as Trudeau, even among Prime Ministers. A definite love or hate relationship for many. The very breadth and magnitude of policies that were undertaken during his years lends weight to thinking he was a mad social engineer, but for anyone who attempts to be objective, they have to at least admit method in much of the madness.

    When I look back, I wonder if they got caught up in a period of over optimism. The successes have formed integral parts of our society, and the failures sometimes were more the failures of those who followed than those who began.

    There were some ill conceived and poorly planned policies as well in my opinion. Implementation of the metric system was a fuddle duddle moment, Agricorp has been a killer and marketing boards were at best hit and miss.

    The aspect of social engineering itself is a huge subject, and something that would be interesting to see discussed in depth. I agree with the statement about enabling Canadians to take control over their lives, but.. the down side to that was many weren't ready to do so then, and many are not ready now.

    He was ahead of his time, and much of what was done would have happened at a later date anyway given the direction of western society. Not all of which was good.

  14. Thanks, Buddy can you spare a dime? I have more questions on lots of topics:) Comrade One, I think that Trudeau was a visionary AND a social engineer. Isn't that what all leaders have been since the beginning? I like what you submitted Herb. Why does it take an 'aura' to make a Leader out of an honourable person? Why do important ideas and plans get pushed aside in favour of 'the whole package'? Maybe we have been conditioned to decide this way...I believe so.

  15. Linda, those are excellent questions and I think I will make a blog topic on that. Contained within the answers to them is understanding not only of how people gauge leaders, but how societies current mindsets and priorities factors into it.

    You hit on a treasure trove of potential insight there.