Rex Murphy did a piece prior to the last Canadian federal election entitled “The Unbearable Lightness of Justin Trudeau.” He lamented that Trudeau doesn’t appear to be able to speak with substance on any particular issue, and he tends to embarrass himself when attempting to go in depth.
It’s become problematic.
Trudeau was overwhelmed at the prospect of keeping his central campaign promise to address our democratic deficit. He now hides behind it. When pressed about his deficits he’ll make the unbearably light claim Canadians voted for them – when in fact that majority of voters voted for a party with a balanced budget proposal while his party’s own proposal contained a promise to have balanced budgets by now. Canadians didn’t vote for any of this.
This speaks to a broken democracy that Trudeau promised to fix. 40% of Americans voted for Walter Mondale, while 39% of Canadians voted for Trudeau. Walter Mondale went down as one of the biggest losers in American electoral history, while Trudeau has political power far exceeding Walter Mondale’s opponent – Ronald Reagan. When Trudeau promised to fix the broken democracy he turned out to be unbearably light – he wasn’t able to accomplish his central campaign promise.
His positions are genuinely vacuous – unbearably light. On feminism, he’s managed to appoint women as 50% of his cabinet. For a health minister Trudeau has appointed a doctor, an A+ choice, for a justice minister Trudeau has appointed a crown prosecutor, an A+ choice; and, as environment minister, Trudeau appointed a lawyer with no experience. She’s overseeing the implementation of a carbon tax, with no resume to suggest qualifications for such a massive project (in fact, she’s advocated on behalf of fossil fuel companies, she has reverse qualifications on environmentalism) and when the opposition raises questions about the implementation they continue to get non-answers – nothing – the most extreme case of lightness is zero force on the scale.
My central point is that his feminism has led to incompetent governance, but beyond that, his feminism is itself unbearably light. In supporting Saudi Arabia in the UN and approving weapons exports that are being used to gun down and prosecute women who are themselves, victims of sexual assault, he’s quite possibly the most misogynistic politician Canada has ever had. Even the leaders of Canada’s misogynistic yesteryear would have raised their eyebrows at such anti-feminism.
His position for the war on terrorism is uniquely light. He’s pulled us out of the fight against ISIS, only to welcome ISIS soldiers to Canada, while paying off al-Qaeda’s Omar Khadr. And yet his arms deal ensures a brutal genocide of the Zaydi Muslims in Yemen continues.
There’s a just war theory where you fight terrorists, but don’t go too far – the golden mean – Trudeau refuses to fight terrorists and welcomes them but then goes too far with illegally committing heinous war crimes. He’s extremely immoderate and unbearably light in his positions.
The issue is plaguing with the latest acquisition of the Kinder Morgan pipeline. As the opposition rained down questions on the governing Liberals, Bill Morneau raised an interesting point. He argued that his opposition doesn’t have experience in managing money. Firstly, as a business owner, I could never fathom telling an investor that a sincere question of my operation was invalid because they don’t have experience in the industry; it’s condescendingly rude and amounts to a non-answer. Secondly, this applies equally well to his boss – the Prime Minister. A good war weapon doesn’t take out one’s own general.
Murphy didn’t realize something – lightness works. Trudeau “selfied” himself into the hearts and minds of 39% of Canadians and won a massive majority. People will remember empty slogans they won’t likely remember the number crunching and ethical clear-headedness the clearly demonstrates these ideas don’t work. Trudeau will attempt to hold onto power and will undoubtedly pursue more of this lightness in the future and we must be ready to counter that.
The lightness is problematic because it’s nothing. We have no answers on the carbon tax. We have no delivery on our democratic deficits. We have no ethics. We have very little feminism and what little we do have amounts to further lightness. The situation has become unbearably light. This has to change.
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