Oh No Canada!

After Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s recent diplomatic visit to India, a farcical event in which Trudeau earned the unstinted mockery of the international press, we are left rubbing our eyes in disbelief -- or, for those who know the man, total belief. This is our political version of Mr. Dressup, a man who imagines that trade talks and inter-governmental relations can be conducted with fancy dress and hip-thrusting dance. Who invites a convicted terrorist, Jaspal Atwal, a Sikh extremist who once tried to assassinate an Indian diplomat on a visit to Canada, to sit at the high table with his Indian counterparts -- before blaming someone else for the blunder. A man who brings his own Indo-Canadian chef to the culinary ceremony, a snub to his hosts -- before blaming some else for the gaffe. It’s no surprise that intelligent people have wondered what could ever have provoked a nation to favor such a person with a majority government.

Anyone with a modicum of common sense and a hint of political acumen knows that Justin Trudeau is an empty sherwani. Nonetheless, he enjoys considerable support among Canadians. Some are bedazzled by his dynastic star quality as the son of Canada’s most eccentric and charismatic Prime Minister Pierre Elliott Trudeau (whose socialist, fiscal and immigration agenda set Canada on the downward spiral gathering momentum today). Others ignore Justin’s disastrous economic policies, which are plunging the country into generational debt, imposing a needless carbon tax, and raising taxes on farmers, doctors and small businesses -- Trudeau claims that a “large percentage of small businesses are actually ways for wealthier Canadians to save on their taxes.” As they say, go figure. This is a man who desires to further restrict the speech of ordinary Canadians, whether by criminalizing “discriminatory” speech against transgenderism or by introducing anti-Islamophobia legislation, pandering to the least democratic elements in our country. It is no accident that he wanted to regulate Facebook conversations unfavorable to his party. His approval of the Chinese Communist regime, his push for gender equalization in his cabinet regardless of merit and his pro-Islamic sympathies have endeared him to “social justice” advocates, as has his egregious comment that Canada has no core identity, though he is doing all he can to empty Canada of whatever identity it can still be said to possess. As my wife Janice Fiamengo states in the Act!forCanada newsletter, “When you elect as national leader a photogenic substitute drama teacher with a soft voice and penchant for progressive slogans, this is what you get.”

All this should have been obvious from the start but Trudeau was viewed, Obama-like, as the radiant hope to rescue the nation from the future. Women have swooned over his media good looks, though others have found his putative handsomeness distinctly effeminate. But the distaff side certainly helped to put him over the top. Former National Post and Walrus editor Jonathan Kay marveled over Trudeau’s book-lined shelves, considering him impressively erudite, thus crowning cognitive stupefaction with intellectual substance. “Trudeau probably reads more than any other politician I know,” Kay wrote, even if his “boyish, eager-to-please personality leads him to project publicly in a way that can seem intellectually unsophisticated.” Kay was no exception to the partisan adulation that helped power a tyrannical buffoon to 24 Sussex Drive.

Trudeau’s electorate chose him as a welcome antidote to former PM Stephen Harper (aka “Harperman”), whom they saw as dour, unimaginative and somehow threatening. Harper had his flaws. He could be imperious, he was too low-key for a hyper world, he was no believer in “peoplekind,” and, from the perspective of his detractors, he was conservative -- all strikes against him. But Harper was fundamentally decent and savvy, steering the country safely through the recession of 2008, a feat for which he received no credit. He simply had to go. He wasn’t with the times, whereas Trudeau was the child of the historical moment -- “because it’s 2015,” as Trudeau put it in yet another of his vacant slogans.

Realistic observers regard Trudeau as the least qualified individual ever to be elected to the highest office in the land. Even the lamentable John Abbott (prime minister 1891-1892), who signed the Montreal Annexation Manifesto (though he later regretted it), would have towered over His Goofiness. It really can’t be doubted, as many have noted, that Trudeau is the Derek Zoolander of Canadian political life, a vacuous and narcissistic fashion model who, like the kids he teaches at the end of the film, “can’t read good” -- though Jonathan Kay has assured us that Trudeau is a reader.

Many commentators, however, who have doubled over with laughter remarking Trudeau’s howler-prone behavior, seem to me to have missed the essential point, namely, that Trudeau is the public face of Liberal Canada. We gave him the keys to the kingdom. He does our political bhangra.

The fact is, then, that Trudeau’s undignified antics not only reflect upon but represent who we are: for the most part, a nation mired in complacency, seeking the glitter of international celebrity to disguise its own lack of glamour and pizzaz, and subject to the siren call of “social justice,” transgender mania, rampant feminism, cultural “diversity,” the virus of multiculturalism, media-inspired groupthink, and unfettered immigration from hostile Islamic backwaters. We are the embarrassment, as cringe-worthy as the stand-up comics on CBC television we love to watch. We are the boy prancing on the international stage, oblivious of the manly example to the south. We are a nation on its merry way, not to India but to Sweden. Justin Trudeau is us. We are the preening laughingstock. And that’s the real story.