to our own Federal general election tonight, as I watched the English language debate between the leaders of the 5 major parties. I was quite disappointed in the whole thing, although frankly I didn’t expect much.
Dan Rather, following all the US debates, was loathe to call them debates at all, suggesting that rather than debate it was really an opportunity for the two leaders to talk about their platform only – the other guy just happened to be in the room. Our debate here was the opposite – it was all acrimonious bickering and no annunciation of coherent platforms. None at all.
Alexa McDonough, leader of the ever-smaller federal NDP, came off the best by far, in my opinion. My own MP, Gilles Duceppe of the Bloc Quebecois, was actually pretty good – except the idea that overwhelms everything else he stands for is diametrically opposed to my view of things. Joe Clark, the once and current leader of the Progressive Conservative party was OK, but it’s clear that although he’s a decent guy, his time has passed.
Which leaves Jean Chretien and Stockwell Day. Chretien, the leader of the Liberal party (and current PM, if you’re not from around here) was basically in an impossible situation. He didn’t meet it very well. Day came off like a motivational speaker – a lying, duplicitous motivational speaker. He and his Canadian Alliance cronies are probably the scariest thing to happen to Canadian politics in years. Which is enough said about him.