There is a recent book, “Divided Loyalties: The Liberal Party Of Canada, 1984-2008” by Brooke Jeffrey, and I believe the premise wrongly depicts the time period’s Liberal Party. Due to the title and premise, I do not care what it concedes on the half of progress despite the divided nature, it argues, of the party. While some might emphasize the Chretien/Martin “camps” and the contested leadership conventions of 2006 and 2008, conversely, I have seen the same party values all the way through. I am a first year university student who only recently came into the political realm. But, in studying the years, as objectively as possible, from 1984 until today I have come to see that the Liberals clearly will do what must be done. Without needing to get caught up in the hysteria of Martin’s tactics in the backrooms and the Stephane Dion criticism, I see that the traditional values of the party remain. The Liberal party has always sought to reflect Canada as the tolerant, center-left and welcoming party and has been successful at this a large part of the time. The other parties have tried to distort or shift the natural leanings of the nation. I have watched the NDP shift from the radical socialist party of Canada to the ‘mildly more left than the Liberal Party’ party. The Conservatives have, in that time: split, polarized, crumbled, risen, united and many other odd things. But, the old Progressive Conservative party is indeed deceased and a renamed Canadian Alliance is governing currently. I see many Liberals, or people who used to vote Liberal, now disenfranchised with the current leadership and direction. I must admit that I desire internal reforms, but this is only to ensure that I put a necessary critical eye to the party that I associate with and make sure it is doing the best job possible. It, despite past reforms, remains conceptually sound. I am sad to see many Liberals not come out to the polls, not follow politics or move party affiliation to the Conservatives or NDP. The Liberal Party has always been a vehicle for people of rational, center-left / center-right and balanced beliefs. Partisans too far to the left or right, like the current Conservatives, exemplify the people who Liberals have always adamantly fought. These are the times when all must unify under the Liberal banner in order to strengthen the leader, strengthen the party and provide a clear momentum on the opposition of ideologue, rigid and NOT compassionate men like Stephen Harper. Liberals, your party is not divided. They’ve been through some difficulties, but still brought accomplished significant things. During the period of 1993-2006, the Liberals had a unified message, brought the clarity act to deal with separatism, balanced the budget, legalized gay marriage and kept away from ideologue messages of left or right persuasion. The Liberals exemplify the Canadian value of “good government” despite what some say about the sponsorship scandal. Chretien’s new autobiography aptly deals with that in my opinion through showing that the people responsible were not Liberals. Guité was even hired under Mulroney. Despite scrutiny, many things did happen that are noteworthy in this time period. The party was effective, coherent and put differences aside when things needed to be done. The Liberal party is diverse in belief but remains a solid vehicle to keep Canada united and progressive. I speak to anyone who is a social Liberal and agrees that Conservatives are failing at even solving their priority issue of the economy. The premise of this book is that the party has been divided for 25 years. I disagree. When you have a surplus of people striving to lead the party that has governed Canada for the majority of the last century, I’m not shocked nor surprised.
- shanemackenzie posted this