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Stéphane Dion's honour

Why are there rumblings in the party about weakness in the most visionary and gutsy leader of any party in recent memory? Dion's decision to not run a Liberal against Elizabeth May is honourable at the highest level and shows that Dion, alone among all the leaders of all the parties, puts his country before his party. Jack Layton is a hero to his party for giving us a Conservative government. Harper is a hero to his for being in power while out-spending the most spendy of governments, and Gilles Duceppe, by definition, does not put his country before his party.

Canada has languished in its recent past, lacking any form of vision and falling behind much of the world in technology and foresight. We pay more than anyone else on the planet for cell phone service while having poorer service than much of the third world. We now build the poorest quality, most fuel inefficient cars on the planet, yet complain that the Asian markets don't want them. We have one of the worst public transit systems in the world, where there is not one single form of public transit that will allow someone to commute from the large city of Guelph to the larger city of Kitchener, just 15 miles away, yet we pour billions of dollars into our highway networks and subsidise the auto and aviation industries.

Then one day a leader comes along with a vision for the future where we can begin to address these failings in the backwater and increasingly irrelevant country of Canada. He is not particularly charismatic and he does not say things just to appease those interested far more by power than by the future of the country in his party, but he represents a future in which our biggest national issues are relevant to our future and not the disposition of our constitution. All the power in the world is not useful if you cannot live in your environment.

The electoral coalition between Dion and May, even if it only encompasses a single riding, is something I had been hoping for. Nobody loses anything by the Liberals not running in Central Nova, or by the Greens not running in St. Laurent-Cartierville. Both stand to gain, although Elizabeth May and the Greens more than the Liberals.

This action frees up the Liberals to support Elizabeth May in Central Nova and allows the local resources of two parties to work together to bring down Peter Mackay, one of the most dishonourable federal politicians in this country whose very presence in government owes to blatant dishonesty with his written lie to David Orchard. After the leadership convention I posted a suggested cabinet for a Dion government, and put Elizabeth May in as Minister of the Environment. I am very happy to see that this is indeed the path we seem to be travelling.

With the electoral system we have, we would do well to form more such electoral coalitions across the country. The Green party is no longer an insignificant player in Canada and must be taken seriously if our own green agenda is ever to come to pass. In ridings where there is a risk of a Conservative winning with anything less than an absolute majority of the vote, it is incumbent upon those of us not falling off the spectrum on the far right to work together to bring in a left wing MP in those ridings. I beg you not to infer from this statement that I would support that most insulting of electoral systems in proportional representation.

The NDP is a long lost cause, putting its own electoral fortunes and party's power well ahead of anything resembling the national interest. In this respect the NDP is worse even than the Conservatives and the respect I had for it a few years ago when Pierre Ducasse made his phenomenal speech at the NDP convention is utterly gone. This party needs to whither and die before it completely destroys what is left of the left in Canada.

The Liberals and the Greens, both centrist parties that merely have different balances of left and right must work together to keep the enlightened in power and the Machiavellians, of which the Liberals certainly have their share, out. The future and the country is more important than the party's tradition of running a candidate in every riding. The country is more important than the party.

Stéphane Dion has my full and continued support.

Posted at 08:06 on April 13, 2007

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Thoughts on the Quebec election a couple of days later | leadership politics | Why I will vote against MMP this fall

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