The Harperites are gunning for Justin Trudeau. Michael Harris writes this morning that:
Not only does the Harper government have the magic wand of incumbency, it has the ruthless machinery to destroy its opponents. The political roadkill is everywhere. And the coming assault on Trudeau hangs in the air like an unspent thunderstorm ready to burst.
And, on the other side, Justin's recent pronouncements on the Nexxen deal and the gun registry have made progressives uneasy. But he stands for an old idea -- which, in the Harper era, seems remarkably fresh:
“Our democracy is in trouble. I trust the people to change that. I trust the people to restore the idea that Canada is a better place than it is now. I trust the people to decide if I’m right for this job.
“I would like to see people vote for something rather than against something. I would also like to improve our idea of citizenship — not just obeying the laws and paying taxes, but Canadians getting involved and being the agents of change. I love the country and I trust Canadians to believe in themselves again.
What a concept! Trusting Canadians to believe in themselves again. Stephen Harper has diminished Canada's democratic institutions. And, operating on the principle that austerity is good for the soul, he has robbed the majority of Canadians of the hope that things will change, replacing it with the grim notion that plutocracy is the way of the world.
Harper -- the anti-Trudeau -- has trashed the idea of the Just Society. Injustice -- in the Middle East -- or in an economy -- where the gap between the rich and the rest of us grows -- is the way of the world. While the banks record huge profits, the economy stagnates.
In the end, the choice is between hope and despair.