You might not know it from the mainstream American media but there was a general election in Canada yesterday and – from what I read in Wikipedia – the results are quite newsworthy. Here’s what Wikipedia reports:
The Liberal Party led by Justin Trudeau won 184 seats, allowing them to form a majority government with Trudeau becoming the Prime Minister-designate of Canada. The Conservative Party led by incumbent Prime Minister Stephen Harper won 99 seats, becoming the Official Opposition after nine years in Government.
In other words, goodbye Stephen Harper, good riddance to bad rubbish.
And hello Justin Trudeau. You’ve got a heck of a legacy to live up to, kid.
Harper will go down in history as perhaps the worst prime minister Canada has ever had. He steered the country as far right as he could, plunging it into a recession in the process.
I wonder if voters in one country ever learn from political disasters in another? Even after “austerity” programs crippled economies in Britain and elsewhere in Europe, Canadians had bought the absurd bill of goods “conservatives” were selling. And Canada certainly paid for that mistake!
But once bitten twice shy, as the old saying goes. Canadian voters gave Harper and his perverse nonsense the boot yesterday. And it was no anemic uprising. More than two-thirds of the electorate turned out (unlike America where voter turnout was about one-third in 2014).
Now it’s up to Trudeau (above with wife Sophie Grégoire-Trudeau) to pull his country out of the doldrums. And I am confident he will.
I was a journalist in Canada during his father’s time, and I remember that period as Canada’s Age of Enlightenment. From the late 1960s until the mid-1980s, Pierre Trudeau guided Canada’s destiny, relying on his brilliant intellect – rather than passion, prejudice and political partisanship – for his decisions.
During that period, Canada blossomed from a staid Colonial culture into a modern society that the rest of the world could look to for inspiration.
I expect Justin to follow in his father’s giant footsteps. I see a new day dawning for Canada.
And I hope American voters are paying attention.
Click for Trudeau’s challenges.
Click for more on the election.
Click for more on Justin Trudeau.