Canada: Fed Election Countdown: 2 days before Vote Day - Travers of Toronto Star already writing history of Martin's defeat
Jim Travers, reporter for Toronto's Daily Star is busy writing the history of the defeat of Paul Martin and his scandal-haunted and hubris-ridden loss of government control in Canada. "Martin damaged beyond repair" (Jan21,2k6): - let's hope Travers is not saying that Martin damaged the country beyond repair, but only himself and his Liberals. Of course, they'll be back at some point down the road. I skip many interesting points the reporter makes as he inspects the entrails of the corpse to auger times past, in answer to the question of historical causality. Why did Martin fall? What was the moment when his destiny turned down the wrong road? But these words of Jim's in the Star are worth meditating:
Opinion polls argue the Conservatives' case. In 2004, residual optimism that Martin might yet fulfil those great leadership expectations trumped the unpleasant experience of his first months in office, making it possible to demonize Conservatives as Reformers. This time the winds of change are howling at Harper's back and Liberal warnings about neo-cons storming Parliament Hill sound like what they are: fear-mongering.As we begin to wonder who Harper will appoint as Finance Minister? Justice Minister? Foreign Affairs Minister?, we also wonder about the ensuing expertise level. Will the competence of the new cabinet be competitive with that of the outgoing Lib govt? If not, how much more will new ministers be subject to the chicanery of senior Civil Servants so frozen in time to the Lib mentality and culture of governance and policy approaches? - Politicarp
Remember too, Liberals and Conservatives have effectively flipped election roles. Instead of Conservatives exposing their default characteristics with uncensored comments, it's Liberals who are tripping over their tongues. Instead of Liberals setting the pace with a razor-sharp campaign, it's now Conservatives.
Of the many reasons for that reversal, one stands in sharp relief. Between elections, Conservatives looked unflinchingly at why they lost while smug Liberals convinced themselves they had won because they were smarter, shrewd, more compelling. One party was honest with itself and learned, the other wasn't and didn't.