Cornwall ON – Michael Ignatieff is on tour. He’s dropping into a town near you as he whistle stops across Canada via Bus; shaking hands, kissin’ babies, smiling, waving, back slapping, eating fried food, Purel’ing, and pandering for votes from Canadians.
He’s trying to connect with Canadians or should I say try and get Canadians to connect with him.
As I watched him here in Cornwall Ontario it struck me how different the experience was than what I was reading in some media reports.
Now as a long time Liberal; up until 2009 as a matter of fact; I’ve grown accustomed to some powerfully personable politicians. I met Pierre Trudeau once, and Jean Chretien; while flawed in some ways was definately quite the Canadian Politician.
Personally I identify with strong politicians; not bullies so much as Strong people who provide natural leadership. And to me strong leadership is trusting in someone even if you don’t agree with them at times. Leadership isn’t depending on script writers and teams of people pitching you to other people while hoping you can pull it off.
I think about things like; would I enjoy having a alcoholic beverage with this person; or spending time with them in a civilian atmosphere? Would I want this person in charge of my welfare and safety? Would I trust them with the PIN to my bank account? And other strange thoughts, but I digress….
I watch our own Mayor in Cornwall Ontario; Bob Kilger; whom I’ve learned immensely from. Watching Mayor Kilger work a room; enter a room, and the little things he does is something you can’t learn in any school. Watching Jean Chretien grab a protester and put him down was spontaneous magic, but it was Canadian magic. Frank McKenna is another Canadian politician I’ve admired, and I will admit I once voted for Brian Mulroney too. Danny Williams fascinates me politically.
We may not be the biggest country in the world, but don’t mess with us. We’re still one of the few countries to ever beat America in war, and ask Germans of a certain age what they think about our Military.
As much as I detest Stephen Harper’s vision of Canada I think I can honestly say I respect the fact that he’s been able to Iron grip his party to near total discipline, and Jean Chretien (and some of his people who probably skipped reading MacBeth in school) can tell you how hard that is.
So today’s exercise as the pools start as to when Mr. Ignatieff’s final day as Liberal Leader is, is whom would you think would have a better chance of beating Stephen Harper? Feel free to take our poll and you may select up to 3 choices.
What do you think Canada? You can post your comments below.