Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Justin Trudeau - someone help me out here

This is a serious question - why should Justin Trudeau's opinion on the Liberal leadership be important to me, or at least any more than any citizen in the street?

Given recent media coverage this guy seems to be very important despite never being elected to a single public office or even have a leadership role in the Liberal party, and whose push for Canada's participation in a putative Darfur mission seems to have distinctly fallen off the radar. His "royal" wedding did give the gossip sections good copy though. It does all seem very Stephen LeDrew-ish (Mr. 1.38%) though, an importance limited to the Hill and various editorial boards.

Inquiring mind wants to know.
Update: Robert Fulford from November 18th's National Post

Justin Trudeau has an oddly perverse way of looking at Pierre Trudeau's life story. "When my father was my age he was still backpacking around the world and beginning to write ..."

Well, no, actually. Justin is now 34. Pierre Trudeau was 34 in 1953. By then, his friends knew him as a world traveller but they also knew him as accomplished and effective.

He had played a part in the historic asbestos strike of 1949-1950, a crucial event in the development of Quebec labour unions. With several friends, he had started (in 1950) the most influential Canadian political journal of the 20th century, the secular, anticlerical and humanist Cite libre. He had acquired a law degree. He had represented unions on labour arbitration boards. He had worked in the Privy Council Office in Ottawa, to learn about how Confederation works. And the year he turned 34 he was chosen to write the Quebec labour unions' brief to the Tremblay royal commission on federal-provincial relations.

Justin has taught high school and chaired a youth volunteer service. He's running a "youth task force" for the Liberal party while working on an MA in environmental geography at McGill. Should he imagine emulating his father, he's already running at least 10 years behind.
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