Letter to the editor: Trudeau: just another political non-entity

Todd Birch offers his opinion of Justin Trudeau's candidacy for leadership of the Liberal Party.


Re: Some like it hot, Editorial, Opinion page, Observer, Sept. 26.

I’m afraid that I don’t share the editor’s enthusiastic endorsement of Justin Trudeau as a candidate for leadership of the Liberal party.

His father, P.E.T. left a mighty big pair of moccasins to fill that no Liberal leader since has managed to fill.

Justin will be just another political non-entity, the scion of an establishment family, trading on his name to compensate for his lack of credentials.

Canadians and the Liberal party deserve better.

I never knew what the word “charisma” meant until “Trudeau-mania” was hyped by the media.

P.E.T. was swept into office on a wave of popularity rare in Canadian politics.

He is best remembered for the infamous “Salmon Arm One Fingered Salute”, adding “Fuddle Duddle” to the Canadian lexicon, establishment of the National Energy Board and the beginnings of the criminalization of firearms ownership that led to the licencing of firearms owners and the now defunct Firearms Registry program.

None of these won him any favours in the west.

When asked how far he was prepared to go after he invoked the War Measures Act during the FLQ Crisis, he replied – “Just watch me!”


That took guts coming from a francophone Prime Minister and cost

him votes, this time in Quebec.


Fondly, I remember him doing a pirouette behind the Queen, his red rose boutonniere,  and the iconic image of him paddling a canoe, wearing a buckskin jacket.

As for Justin, “… his passion for social justice and climate change, delivering speeches on gay rights, youth involvement, affordable housing and citizenship …” make him sound more likely a candidate to replace the late NDP leader Jack Layton rather than the next leader of “Canada’s natural ruling party”.

His stated intention of making the Liberal party the party of the middle class sounds too proletarian for the Liberal elite.

As for his alleged “easy-on-the-eyes appeal”, I think he needs a good haircut, free to MPs, I believe.

Both Preston Manning and Stephen Harper have been criticized for their too perfect, Teflon hair.

It takes more than “really great hair, designer jeans and fitted button downs” to make a good leader.

By those standards, Sarah Palin would have been a good president for the Americans and she has great legs.

When it was announced that Merritt rancher Judy Guichon was to be our next Lt. Governor, no mention was made of her hair, clothes or good looks.

To do so would have served to diminished the authority and grace of her office as representative of the Queen. Instead, her list of accomplishments and service to the people of British Columbia were made known.

If it is true that “… politics needs Trudeau, Canadians need Trudeau …”, then we are saying that we are willing to trade glamour for substance, ‘bling’ for ability and charisma for accomplishment.

We’ve been down this road before.

People truly get the government, police and army they deserve or are willing to pay for.

Todd Birch



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