Listen Up! I am not a fan of Justin Trudeau in his role as Prime Minister ~ Opinion

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Hugh Mackenzie
Huntsville Doppler

Please don’t grind your teeth!

We are now fully into an election campaign in Canada and the gloves are clearly off. If I were a betting man, at this early stage, I would predict a minority Liberal Government, backed by the NDP who have come out of the gate more strongly than anticipated. Clearly, I hope I am wrong.

My beef is not so much with the Liberals. They and the Conservatives have been the governing parties in this country since Confederation. Over those years Canada has become and remains one of the most prosperous and envied countries in the world. Inevitable mistakes aside, not a bad record of achievement for either party.

No, my beef is primarily with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. I believe he is a weak leader whose substance is more charismatic than politically wise. He talks from one side of his mouth and delivers from the other. During his tenure, he has created a deficit many times higher than he promised, he has demonstrated an apparent lack of respect for the rule of law and he has divided this country as it has not been divided in decades.

Justin Trudeau prides himself as an environmentalist and yet it is he who allowed the City of Montreal to dump millions of tons of sewage into our waterways. He hails himself as a feminist and yet he punishes women for not acting like men. He has painted himself as the champion of human rights and yet he has ducked, for political expedience (as, to be fair, has Andrew Scheer) the issue of state-sponsored discrimination in Quebec which prevents many people from teaching or nursing or working in other public service jobs because of their religious beliefs and obligations. And in recent weeks, Mr. Trudeau has blocked any investigation into his conduct related to the SNC-Lavalin scandal by stopping a Parliamentary enquiry, restricting the Ethics Commissioner, and denying access to relevant documents by the RCMP.

Now, as we enter this election period, where is the record of accomplishments that Mr. Trudeau should be proud of? Instead, there seems to be an election strategy based on two elements. The first is pure pork-barreling. During the past few months the government led by Justin Trudeau, in an unprecedented spending spree, made more than 1,000 announcements in promised funding, totalling $10 billion. Most of this was in ridings held by the Liberals and all of this at a time our country is facing an extraordinary and escalating debt, which unchecked will result in catastrophic consequences for Canadians, no less severe than our challenges with climate change. I am holding my breath to see if Mr. Trudeau sees this election campaign as an appropriate time to send Canadians a cheque for his promised rebate on the so-called carbon tax.

The second component appears to be a strategy of character assassination. This from a man who promised that politics would be conducted differently under his watch. Just today, the first ten posts I saw on Twitter were from Trudeau trolls who castigated Andrew Scheer for having a candidate who happened to have a friend with unacceptable alt-right views. The Toronto Sun said it best recently, when they wrote this: “In this election Trudeau has basically suggested that anybody that supports Conservative Andrew Scheer is backing a white-supremacist sympathizing, immigrant-bashing homophobe.”  It is sadly clear from old videos being released by the Trudeau camp and by statements made by him and his cohorts that this is an important element of their campaign.

I do not know Andrew Scheer. I have never met him. But nothing I have seen has led me to believe he is not a person of high character. And I will say the same thing of Justin Trudeau. I disagree with him profoundly, but I do not question his character.

Mr. Scheer is a man of faith and in Canada he is still entitled to his beliefs which evolve from that. What he is not entitled to, is to impose those personal views on others, especially as Prime Minister, should he ever hold that office. He has promised not to do that and I know of no reason why he should not be believed. Critics often point to Stephen Harper in order to criticize Andrew Scheer. They should remember that Stephen Harper was also a man of faith and never once did he abuse his office to impose those views on others.

Now, a note to my Liberal friends and to those who disagree with me, who, if they have read this far, are probably grinding their teeth. Please don’t. What I have written is my viewpoint. That is what I do. I write opinion pieces based on my background, experience and beliefs. I have voted Liberal in the past and I may well do so again in the future. But I am just not a fan of Justin Trudeau in his role as Prime Minister. That is my opinion and I am entitled to it.

It is important to be clear however, that this is not a one-way street. All opinions are important, especially during an election cycle. We will post any respectfully written viewpoints, whether they be comments or articles.  A healthy debate is based on differing opinions.

Surely that is what democracy is all about.

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23 Comments

    • There is perfection in none of the parties, I am voting Liberal as the Conservatives leave a very bad taste in my mouth, they are lead by racists and dividers. Who else is viable to run the country, our best outcome is a minority government then we have a much better shot of getting the things we think are important done.

  1. I think that you are correct about Trudeau, But you said it, the Liberals and Conservatives have run this country forever. Same coin, different sides….
    I think it is time to do politics differently. I am tired of the fighting, and back stabbing. It is long over due to have Proportional representation….and we know there it only one party that talks about doing that. And that is Green. People are tired of not being represented, and apathy abounds because of it.
    Time to force these politicians to work together. They all have something good to say. It is time to listen to one another.

    • All parties working together to take the best of all suggestions for running our country has been asked for by the public for decades and is still not happening. Too many egos trying to leave a single party legacy still around, but hopefully Trudeau has shocked enough people (and even those in his own party) into finally seeing the light? Sure hope so! When it is realized that the welfare of Canada is more important than photo ops in international sites, mega donations to international groups when our own people have unattended needs, and childish actions, we may just see some well educated common sense results, but Justin Trudeau can never fill this bill with his limited education and immature ways. Pity the next PM who has to try to clean up his messes and pacify impatient voters who want it done yesterday. We need a strong Prime Minister who listens to all parties and voters and who can act quickly – tough jobs at any time.

    • I also am going to vote green , some will say oh it’s just a wasted vote. But frankly I’m sick of liberals and conservatives . I’ve had enough of their not following parliamentary rules and spending like the money they have is water. And so on and so on, time to give another party a chance.

  2. Excellent Hugh. Just about covers it all.
    I will still bet he will be re-elected. He’s Mr. Cool.
    The women love him. Quebec worships him.
    Hopefully I am proven wrong.

  3. Where is the record of accomplishments Trudeau—and we Canadians—should be proud of: seriously Hugh? Here are a few… How about improving the lot of the Canadian middle class, including lifting literally hundreds of thousands of children out of poverty, gender parity in cabinet, right to die legislation, legalization of cannabis, a strong focus on reconcilliation with First Nations and reduction in the number of boil water advisories on reserves, a compassionate approach to refugees, his deft handling of the Trump file, including renegotiating NAFTA… And these are just off the top of my head. None of that was easy, none of that was perfect, but every one makes me proud to be Canadian. And yes I do volunteer for Liberal candidate Trisha Cowie’s campaign. These are some of the reasons why.

    • Canada is in a much weaker position today than 4 years ago… we are laughed at/ignored on the world stage, have higher government debt and decifits (in the good times), record consumer and business debt, higher taxes for most in the middle class, low GPD growth (~60% of the US growth rate), growing trade decifits, a mess on the Quebec-US border, no serious investments in new greener energy/technology yet numerous pipeline/energy-policy disasters needlessly punishing our oil & gas industry, a more divided and angry country, multiple ethnics scandals and many hipocracy/lying examples.

      So much for Trudeau’s “sunny ways”. Turns out he was not up to the job, Canadians got duped. Another 4 years under his “leadership”, in almost certain tougher economic times, would be a disaster. I can’t believe the polls are even close… what are Canadians thinking??

  4. Hugh,
    You and I are most always on the same wave length and that continues.
    I do differ on your statement that you have no issue with his character. I most certainly have. His demonstrated willingness to break and pervert the intention of the laws he is required to uphold is an indication of flawed character to me.
    I’ll definitely be casting my vote elsewhere.
    Keep up the good work..

  5. I heard somewhere that Justin Trudeau was an actor?! I think he is a good one. He uses those skills frequently. An actor he is, but a Prime Minister he is NOT! The part where Trump turned his back on our PM leaving him talking to Trump’s coattails was appalling! Justin should have recognized the setting was not to his advantage, something most politicians would have known.
    I really cannot understand why it has come to the possibility that this conniving excuse for a PM can possibly be reelected for another term. The election of the Liberals in Ontario was always the work of the Teachers until McGinty and Wynne acted badly.
    I like the Conservative way of thinking, but they shoot themselves in the foot for leaders. If Mr. Ford would explain what he is planning on doing with the dollars saved he would be more acceptable and he just has to get rid of the Cheshire cat grin. Mr. Scheer needs better handlers, and he needs to pick up a guitar like Mr. Harper did and ask for a bit of help from his friends. Right now Andrew looks like an unsuccessful door to door salesman. You need to get some fire in your belly Andrew!

  6. I don’t know where to start with Trudeau but your piece here is a good start. I’ve never been so embarrassed to be Canadian with this man as leader of our once great country. We are divided as never before and now rank alongside countries with dictators who have no regard for law with our tabloid PM.
    Trump has played us over and over whether it’s NAFTA or Huawei. The middle class is worse off and living week to week with a desperate outlook. Legalization of Cannabis has been a disaster and a comedy of errors. His “thanks for the donation “ handling of Indigenous peoples has been shameful.
    But it’s the smug, flat out lying and refusal to apologize for anything remotely connected to him that angers me most. I hope Canadians can co e to their senses on Election Day and put this awful experiment behind us.

  7. Hugh, I just can’t abide the thought of you waiting impatiently for a gentle rebuttal from yours truly; ergo…
    .
    Firstly, kudos on coming around to my viewpoint of a Liberal minority with the NDP as kingmakers. At least initially, I am impressed with my fellow Canadians for their lack of prejudice toward Mr. Singh,
    .
    Also, I haven’t given up on Mr. Trudeau as an environmentalist. Whoever we elect MUST address the GLOBAL climate crisis: I feel that then will be the time for evaluation. I did note, however, how quickly he picked up the bill for Ontario’s tree-planting program; discontinued by a Tory Premier. And the word on the street is that one has to apply for the carbon-tax rebate. The human rights issue in la belle province is admittedly disgusting. To the extent that other provinces (most notably British Columbia and the Maritime provinces) are profiting from the exodus of P.Q. professionals; I would call that a moot point. And the nationalization of considerable oil reserves, which subsequently will find their way to port on the left coast was very Prime-Ministerial. Opening up the supply to international needs was the moral imperative; as opposed to a pipeline south for profits only. Retaining the pipeline alternative will certainly be more difficult in the face of the recent drone attacks (which reduced international reserves by 5%).
    .
    Finally, I cannot, and will not, defend the PM on his handling of the SNC-Lavalin affair. I have always maintained that he should have been honest with Canadians from the outset. His continuous obfuscations resulted in the loss of two very fine, female, aboriginal Cabinet Ministers. Recent Canadian jurisprudence would seemingly have resulted in the contract staying in Canada anyway. Yes, he overspent: and yes, he continues to overspend (standard operating procedure during campaigns). But his one glaring error should not preclude further tenure. The NDP, always our moral compass, will certainly prevent any excess.

  8. Hugh thanks for sharing your views on the current situation. Unleashing all the spending announcements to Liberal friendly ridings is astonishing and sad. Subsidizing the media with our hard earned money so that they can obstruct our view of the real challenges facing Canadians. Subsidizing the media creates bias. What is the true cost of the Liberal propaganda machine?
    How Low will the ruling Liberals go to maintain power? There will be no justice in Ottawa until we eliminate the injustices being perpetuated by the current obstructionist regime holding power. Yes we are going to do politics different Justin, your not kidding.

  9. Hugh, let me start by saying that like you I have voted both Liberal and Conservative. In fact, I voted for Harper in 2015. And using the Toronto Sun as a credible reference? Really? Do you remember your Rotary four-way test? Is it the truth? Is it fair to all concerned? Let’s be fair. Which alternative would have done a better than Trudeau in the face of a perfect storm: NAFTA negotiations with an extremely volatile and illogical trade partner, hostile foreign operators using the Internet and social media to influence our resource development to name just a few.
    As for a track record:
    1. Trudeau advanced the trade agreement with the EU that Harper started.
    2. Trudeau kept us in the Trans-Pacific trade deal.
    3. Trudeau led the massive PR campaign with US politicians that enabled a good conclusion on NAFTA.
    4. He managed to launch one of the world’s most credible actions to reduce emissions. By the way, anyone who filed their 2018 tax return properly has already received the first carbon tax rebate. I got my rebate. Have you checked your tax return?
    5. Building pipelines is a complex and frustrating job. But Canada has had more success than the USA. The Trans-Mountain pipeline expansion was proposed in 2013 and construction started 6 years later in August 2019. That is 5 years less than the Keystone XL pipeline that was proposed in 2008 and approved 11 years later by the Nevada State Supreme Court. The US will need our oil, but KXL could be cancelled again before it gets built. Both Conservatives and Liberals contributed to that.
    6. And I simply do not believe that any other party leader would have thrown SNC-Lavalin, one of Canada’s few flagship companies, under the bus. That was just pure and ugly partisan politics.
    7. Canada’s ratio of debt to GDP is in line with most other developed countries and much better than the USA.
    Remember the real test. Is it the truth? Is it fair? The leader takes the flack for any and all failures. So is he not entitled to take some credit for the successes?

  10. Personal criticism is the refuge of those who cannot fairly argue against the governing record.
    .
    If you feel the need to justify having and expressing your opinion, Hugh, it’s because you know at heart you should be asking yourself those Rotary questions.
    .
    Quite honestly, I’m not a fan of Justin Trudeau either. However, much more is at stake than a prime minister’s personality.
    .
    The way I look at politics is very simple. I am opposed to those who 1) support increasing income inequality and 2) promote continuing environmental damage. The reason for #2 should be obvious — we are a species which is destroying its habitat — but #1 is crucial too, because if income inequality increases enough, it destroys a society. Rips it apart with violence as the deprived decide they’ve had enough and the over-indulged entrench. It’s been established fairly well that gun violence is worst in places with high income inequality (just Google “gun violence income inequality” to see multiple articles and studies). But history teaches the same lesson; any empire whose fall is attributed to “decadence” actually fell due to income inequality. Shortly before the very-bloody French revolution, for instance, someone commented that in France, 90% of the population was dying of starvation and 10% of indigestion.
    .
    Every Canadian knows in his or her heart which of our political parties support and increase income inequality, and which try to reverse or at least slow it. There are many words thrown about to try to mask this reality and conceal from average people that their hardship is increasing due to the greed of 1%ers. Some of those masking words are dedicated to trying to make even the discussion of this reality taboo. But we know in our hearts because we see the actions when each party forms a government.
    .
    Vote wisely on Oct. 21.

    • Murray Christenson on

      Any individual who complains of income inequality is free to work hard and remove them self from the situation…don’t expect the government and those who are taking action to better themselves to fix it for them.
      For those unable to make the effort, we have a significant social safety net already in place.

      • Karen Wehrstein on

        Murray, in the 50s and 60s it was possible to maintain a house and a car, put more than one child through university, and have money left over for a few extras like vacations, on a *single* income. I watched my parents do it. Now it takes two incomes and often crushing debt for the kids’ higher education. it does not matter how hard the couple works. Ever think about that? Ever wonder why? It’s a bit of hidden history, isn’t it?
        .
        Educate yourself here: https://www.epi.org/productivity-pay-gap/ . It is about the US, but Canada followed as we usually do. It is no coincidence that workers ceased to be recompensed proportionally for increases in productivity after Ronald Reagan came into power. He was all about increasing income inequality. So was every Republican administration that followed.
        .
        You seem to live in a fantasy world where there is no socioeconomic stratification across generations, i.e. no child gets born into a vastly wealthier family or neighbourhood or social circle than another, and no corporation drops hardworking North American employees for hardworking Third World employees because they can live well on a small fraction of what it costs to live in North America.
        .
        If you are in favour of making the real world match your fantasy, you want to be voting for a party that will reverse income inequality. That would actually be good for the economy, because the more money is spread around over larger numbers of people, the more they buy and sell. I don’t know your age, whether you remember double-figure prime interest rates. They used to be possible; not any more. The general public has been too poverty-stricken to spend or borrow enough to maintain them for more than a couple of decades now. I know, more hidden history that should be common knowledge. Canadians need to, to borrow the American expression, “get woke”.

        • Murray Christenson on

          Karen, clearly you’ve drunk the socialist kool aid so I suggest its you who need to “get woke”…a ridiculous term if there ever was one. So, I’ll not waste a lot of time responding to your comment.
          However, when I say work hard consider it a metaphor. To become successful and change ones situation, it involves taking risk, using your head, being creative and not letting anything or anyone hold you back. Personally, I was stuck in a dead end factory job when I left high school and wanted to better myself. I quit and went back to school, got a job making half what I made in the factory after graduating. It took me seven years of long hours and learning my craft before I made as much as that factory job. I did end climbing the ladder rapidly after that and enjoyed a life beyond what I could’ve expected including income well into six figures. So Karen, ya, I remember double digit interest rates that crushed young people trying to buy a home…me at the time..and I do have an idea of the real world.
          Thankfully we live in a free country where dreams can come true if you want them.

  11. Everyone is entitled to their opinions, but if you are going to write a ‘good’ opinion piece that will be read by thousands, it would make sense to back your arguments with facts vs assumptions or extreme bias. Your opinion is that Trudeau is a weak leader and you support your opinion with the following examples of weak leadership.
    – “I believe Trudeau is a weak leader…” because:
    – “Trudeau prides himself as an environmentalist…” yet allows Montreal to dump raw sewage into the St. Lawrence. Wow, such a weak argument. On Nov. 15th, 2015 Montreal began dumping raw sewage into the St. Lawrence for 8 days, in order to fix aging infrastructure. Both the Quebec and Federal governments approved this. The approval would have been granted while Harper was still in power. A second dump occurred again 2018 as more repairs were required. To blame either Trudeau or Harper for this is just silly. One, where were they to hold the sewage while repairs were being made and secondly, small dumps like these (relevant to the size of the body of water) are environmentally inconsequential.
    – “he hails himself as a feminist and yet punishes women…” Jody Wilson-Raybould was removed from her job because she broke the #1 rule of parliamentary politics. In Caucus, you are entitled to state your opinion and that opinion remains private, but once the caucus makes a decision you are obligated to support that position, even if you vehemently believe it is wrong. If you cannot live with the decision the correct and moral decision is to resign, while keeping your mouth shut for the good of the party. JWR was not a team player and didn’t want to play by the ‘rules’. It had nothing to do with her being a woman!!
    – Ducks state sponsored discrimination in Quebec. This is horrible legislation enacted by the racist governing party in Quebec. Both Trudeau and Scheer have agreed to not make this an election issue and will let the Supreme Court of Canada deal with it properly.
    – Blocked investigation into SNC-Lavalin. This is a red herring. First of all the indiscretions occurred while the Conservatives were in power and it has taken years to come to court. Secondly, criminal charges should be laid against the ‘people’ that perpetrated the crime (Senior leaders and directors) not a corporate entity. To convict an entity in this case would penalize the employees and shareholders long after the guilty parties have left the company. Secondly, Trudeau pressured JWR to drop the criminal charges against the company for the reasons mentioned above. JWR refused to honour the caucus decision and lost her job because of it. The PM or PMO never blocked JWR or the AG’s office was laying charges ….which they ultimately did.
    – Trudeau is a divisive leader. I believe that the opposite is true. He has been trying to install inclusive policies of race, religion and sexuality since taking office. On the other hand Scheer and the CPC Party are holding on to prehistoric white nationalist values as they realize that they cannot win the election without the support of the ‘redneck’ fringe vote.
    – Character assassination of Scheer. This is the pot calling the kettle black. It’s an election and this is what happens when people play dirty. Scheer has refused to support Gay rights by never attending a Pride parade, yet he has had no problem speaking at White Nationalist rallies on several occasions. Trudeau and the Liberals are stating facts and letting Canadians know that by supporting Scheer and the CPC, they are encouraging Racism, Homophobia and White Nationalism.
    – Is Trudeau a weak leader? That’s a good question and one that only time will tell depending on what you use as a measuring stick.
    – Will Scheer be a good leader? We honestly don’t know, because he has never held a leadership position since leaving university almost 20 years ago. He’s definitely an opportunist that decided many decades ago, that politics would be his career. In my opinion, he was a nobody that won the CPC leadership on the 7th or 8th ballet due to the Quebec dairy industry stuffing the ballot box at the 11th hour. https://www.macleans.ca/politics/the-dairy-lobbys-iron-grip-on-canadian-political-leaders-is-frightening-to-behold/
    – Finally, I as a former PC supporter of more than 30 years ask; do your moral beliefs align with Scheer and the CPC of today? Mine do not. I cannot honestly support a leader that snubs the LGBTQ community, or a party that has numerous racists and homophobes running for office, or a party and leader that will not vehemently distance themselves from white nationalists. I cannot support a leader and party that continually twists the truth and at times states blatant lies that the electorate then accepts as facts. I cannot support a party that advocates tax cuts for the rich and multi-national corporations, while paying for these cuts by cutting social programs that support lower and middle class Canadians. Look no further than Ontario, where the Doug Ford PCs have implemented a similar playbook …and for these reasons I cannot support Scheer, the CPC or any candidate associated with the CPC.

  12. We will never have a true democratic government until we have 100 per cent free votes in parliament. That way “our” MPs can vote as their constituents would want them to vote and if a bill is defeated we would not create another election. Now members of the majority have to vote along party lines. Witness the disgusting actions of the ethics committee controlled by the liberal party. I call this a dictatorship not a democracy.
    As far as a minority government is concerned I don’t want this power resting with the NDP or the Green Party.
    With now five plus different parties God help us

  13. As far as Justin Trudeau goes dressing up as and Jeannie I see nothing wrong with it I am not a Justin Trudeau fan at all but I am sick and tired of these people who come from other countries that they’re not happy with coming here and trying to change stuff that works I am not prejudice by any means but I am tired I’ve seen our country go down the weight has went down we were happy bunch of people satisfied with the way everything was working other countries seen that we were accomplished and free now we have people from other countries that aren’t happy with their country coming to our country and trying to change it into their country Time for us to smarten up do you want to come to Canada be a Canadian I noticed in my life that that people like to put the race first African-American Indian Canadian how about putting Canada first and saying I am a CanadianKeep your race out of it and if you don’t like the way it is over here you can always leave stop trying to destroy stuff that works

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