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Last weekend, both the Liberals and the Conservatives held party conventions in Canada.  Former Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced his retirement, so current Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gave him some bon mots:

“We need to remember that even though [the Conservatives] may be our opponents, they’re not our enemies. They’re our neighbours and our friends.”

“I can tell you, even if you weren’t a fan of his politics, there can be no doubting Stephen Harper’s commitment to our country.”

Of course, party rivalry being what it is, the main news item from this event was former Liberal leader Bob Rae pretending to throw up at the idea of praising Harper.

Years ago, people used to compare Stephen Harper with George W. Bush, but really this was hyperbole.  Harper wanted his country to do well.  Bush wanted his country to be weak enough to drown in a bathtub.  They sometimes agreed on means, but never on ends.

I joined the Liberal Party of Canada about a month ago, thinking maybe it could help me get a job.  The constant barrage of fund-raising emails has been disheartening, including the ones from the P.M.  But then sometimes Justin puts on his "statesman" hat and I wish everyone else in his party were just like him.

Date: 2016-06-04 09:58 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] porsupah.livejournal.com
I'm not entirely sure I'd be so charitable toward Harper - he seems like another Cameron, in it for his own sake, and the gravy train that follows from such a position, exemplified by the American presidency.

Needless to say, I'm delighted to see someone as outright inspirational as Trudeau come to prominence, much as I admire Corbyn's surprise ascendancy. ^_^

It's a good point, regardless, that supporters of other candidates are indeed still people. It shouldn't really need saying, but sometimes fixations take hold, especially if dog whistles are sounded, eg anti-immigration, anti-LGBT, pro-patriotism (an attribute few actually earn; most people live somewhere simply because they were born there. The difficulties involved in doing otherwise therefore remain unseen to them, yet they take extraordinary pride in an attribute of their birth, no more).

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