Sunday, December 03, 2006

Stéphane Dion, Canada's next Prime Minister.....NOT!!!


The Liberal Party of Canada seems to think they have elected Canada's next Prime Minister over the weekend. Not if I can help it.

What does it say about a party who's winning leadership candidate is the one a majority of convention delegates dislikes the least? An acceptable second-choice - the most inoffensive option - seems to be an appropriate way to go for a second-rate party. This doesn't bode terribly well for the next election; two uncharismatic policy wonks going to toe to (snore.....) toe in the leadership debates. Is it just me or is the idea of Jack Layton being the most likeable party leader just a tad scary? Reminiscent of the Ed Broadbent days, at the very least. For the love of god, somebody invite Green Party leader, Elizabeth May, to the show!

I didn't think Dion was going to win it. I, like many of the pundits, thought that Bob Rae was grabbing much of the momentum leading up to the vote (not that the endorsement of Joe Volpe amounts to anything even remotely resembling momenutm). I figured the winning candidate would have been between Rae and Michael Ignatieff (whose last name roughly translates into "damned Ukrianians and Jews" in English), with the ultimate winner being he who had the smaller anti-me movement. Turns out, both the anti-Rae and anti-Iggy votes were larger than expected, as they all seemed to flock, like lemmings, to Dion.

Perhaps that's too unkind. I think the story of the convention was Gerrard Kennedy. After having blown a huge fourth quarter (wait, this is Canada)...third period lead ten years ago in the Ontario Liberal leadership convention, he proved to be THE deciding force. Not only did he ultimately play kingmaker in a personal capacity, but he was able to deliver the goods, in the form of delegates. This has been less of a certainty in recent years.

You have to figure, however, that the Rae-Iggy friendship is over. "Friendship over delegates" my ass! Rae gave him the ultimate slap in the face, by not giving him - his former university roommate - at least a personal endorsement, if not that of his delegation. Having said that, the anti-Rae and anti-Iggy crowd tended to be a mutually exclusive lot, now didn't they?

Whatever Iggy did to court the gay vote, I don't know, but he did ultimately sway Scott Brison and George Smitherman to his camp. Or course, I think the latter was just the inadvertent result of the Ignatieff camp passing out free baggies of crystal meth. in an attempt to attract youth delegates, but who's to say? So, what's next for Scott Brison? A leadership run for the N.D.P. or the Greens? More fittingly, perhaps it should be the Monster, Raving Loony Party. Wait, you need U.K. citizenship for that.

On a final note, I couldn't help but be fixated on Belinda Stronach's dye job the whole weekend. I guess she got tired of the blond jokes. Either that or she's emulating the career of her favourite female role-model, Christina Aguilera. However, did anyone else notice how straight the do was Friday evening, and then how frizzy, JBF throughout Saturday? I guess Tie was in town that weekend for the Leafs-Canadiens tilt at the Bell Centre.

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