11.29.2016 01:00 AM

This week’s column: God save Justin Trudeau 

Grateful, relieved, happy. 

That’s what not a few of us felt when Donald Trump “won.” 

(I put “won” in flying quotes because, as various experts have now noted, there’s an excellent chance that the bilious billionaire actually lost the presidential race, but “won” because industrious Russian hackers nudged 100,000 votes in three states towards him. In that way, Trump – who is now more than TWO MILLION VOTES behind Hillary Clinton nationally – “won” the state-by-state Electoral College. But we digress.)

Nobody who is sane was in any way grateful, relieved or happy when Trump “won,” naturally. Anyone with the slightest stake in the present was variously outraged, mystified and/or scared shitless. We still are, on a global scale. 

But, nationally, at least, I suspect most Canadians were happy. Because (a) we live in Canada, and (b) because Justin Trudeau is Prime Minister. 

If you live in Canada, you are generally always happier than our American friends. We have a better quality of life, we have free health care, we have better public schools, we have safer streets, we have better regulation of banks and industries, we have much better relationships with our fellow citizens – whatever their race, religion or sexual orientation. Up here, everything is just way better – hockey now regretfully excluded. Every Canadian knows that. 

But, in the past three weeks, we have been made better by Justin Trudeau running things, too. It’s the truth. 

It is also true that I have not always been wildly enthusiastic about the way the newly-minted Prime Minister does things. Having had the privilege and honour of working for the Rt. Hon. Jean Chrétien for quite a few years, I learned the value of the following things:

• always undersell and over-perform 

• always be in the papers as little as possible

• always treat taxpayer dollars like they are precious things, because they are 

The Trudeau guys have a different way of doing things. The selfies, the media focus, the tendency to be slightly-less-than-parsimonious, the frequent use of adjectives when describing what they were elected to do. I’m not used to that style of governing, at all, and I don’t particularly like that style of governing. I have often said so, Liberal Party membership card notwithstanding. 

But now? Now, after Trump? Now, when the world is about to become decidedly more nasty, more brutish, more short?

In Trump World, I now feel like kissing the ground upon which Justin Trudeau walks. I feel like giving voice to heavenly hosannas and hallelujahs. I feel like dancing, to quote Leo Sayer, circa 1976. 

Trudeau, whatever his shortcomings, is a giant on the world stage when compared to the sausage-fingered, sphincter-mouthed, combed-over, racist/sexist/arguably fascist Human Cheeto to the South. 

Justin Trudeau is everything Donald Trump is not: Likeable. Sane. Decent. Smart. Democratically elected (see: industrious Russian hackers perverting democracy in three states, above). 

Will we Canucks be safer in the coming Dark Times? Probably not. Trump is the best recruitment tool ISIS has ever had. Will we benefit economically? Don’t be ridiculous: Trump’s trade policy is more protectionist than North Korea’s. Things are about to get way worse, and everyone will feel it. 

But Canada, as several Americans recently told me, is a much better place to be until Trump is indicted. During the campaign in which she would get TWO MILLION VOTES more than her vile opponent, my wife and I volunteered for Hillary Clinton in New Hampshire, Maine and at her Brooklyn headquarters. Over and over, our fellow Team Clinton members would say to us: “If Trump wins, can we move into your basement? Oh, and PS: Justin Trudeau is awesome.”

Well, folks, we can reveal that there are now several million American refugees down in our basement, stacked like cordwood. All clutching Team Trudeau campaign buttons. 

They are grateful, relieved and happy that Justin Trudeau and Canada both still exist. 

Like I am. And like you should be, too. 


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    Eric Weiss says:

    The things that make Canada great have very little to do with Justin Trudeau. Canadian values of fair mindedness, equality, multi-culturalism, peace order and good government have been around much longer than he has and will be around long after he’s gone. It’s embedded in the Canadian character, and no politician or party can lay claim to it. It transcends politics and partisanship. Canada was great before him. It will be great after.

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      MississaugaPeter says:


      Although the fanatical left (I would prefer to be just slightly left of centre) would disagree, but most of the “Justin Trudeau” could be replaced with “Stephen Harper” and all our fine prime ministers before him. The best of which, in this upcoming 150th year, were Lester B. Pearson and Sir John A. Macdonald.

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        BillBC says:

        I was going to say the same thing. Nothing to do with Trudeau; any one of our PMs would have been better, including Harper. But you said it first.

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      Eric Weiss says:

      Who is anti-Trudeau?

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      terence quinn says:

      One might note that Canada was becoming an uglier place under the Harper regime.

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        Eric Weiss says:

        One might. One might also disagree and believe that most of that perceived ugliness was from partisans with Harper Derangement Syndrome. Canada was no better or worse a place under Harper than it is now.

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          Duncan Morris says:

          You Harper apologists have a very short memory. Does “Barbaric Cultural Practices Tip line” evoke any memories? How about the “Fair elections act” envied by Kim Yong-Un or perhaps the Temporary Foreign Workers program, the Mike Duffy/Pamela Wallin circu$$, the dismantling of decades of environmental protection law, the conversion of the Canadian economy into that of a petro-state, the worsening job market, the abandonment of the manufacturing sector, the serial electoral crimes and irregularities, the constant attack ads, the defunding of Canadian women’s groups, the Libya disaster, the $46 billion F-35 procurement fiasco, and the trashing of Canadian veterans at the hands of Harper buddy, Julian Fantino….. I’m just warming up. It’s nice to have a memory.

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            Eric Weiss says:

            Who’s apologizing? And for every Harper scandal, I can name a Liberal one. Partisans want to point fingers and act like your own parties don’t have decades of scandal an baggage too. They all do, and for the most part, Canada goes on just fine.

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    Lance says:

    “……we have free health care”……

    With all due respect, no we do not.

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    Steve Prentice says:

    I hate when someone says we have FREE HEALTH CARE…trust me, we definitely pay for our health care…

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    billg says:

    I’m starting to think that both Trudeau and Trump have exactly the same mindset, just with different angles.
    They both have said exactly what they thought needed to be said to get elected even though they knew they would govern differently.
    Trump is not rounding people up for mass deportation or for firing squads, people will not be branded, the Clintons will not be thrown in jail, a wall will not be built, and, a large majority of trade will still occur and trade agreements will not be ripped up and re-written, so, basically he lied and he knew it.
    Trudeau will not abide with the UN regarding Indigenous rights like he said he would, Pipelines will be built, Damns are being built on Native Land, arms are still sold to the Saudi’s, tankers full of oil still float down the Seaway in Quebec, the public service union still feels disrespected, and, Electoral reform is basically dead, so, basically he lied and he knew it.
    Stephen Harper disappointed many on the right when he governed from the middle.
    Justin Trudeau will disappoint many on the left as he starts to govern from the middle.
    Its why most voters stay within the confines of Liberal/Conservative, they have enough sense to govern sensibly.

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    Ridiculosity says:

    I am indeed grateful, happy and relieved that Justin Trudeau is our Prime Minister.

    Is he perfect? No. Nobody is.

    Is he a decent, sane, very hardworking man, faced with the impossible task of trying to make everyone happy? Yes. And I wouldn’t want his job for all the riches in the world.

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      Lyndon Dunkley says:

      I now know why Trudeau is rarely seen without his sleeves rolled up – imagery works.

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    Dan Calda says:

    Justin Trudeau and Angela Merkel will become the beacons of light and the most important politicos of our generation. The rise of the neo nazis, uber conservatism worldwide is a clear and present danger.

    Yes…thank god that JT is our PM.

    I have often said…the job of the PM isn’t to “keep us safe”, isn’t to create jobs, isn’t to build our economy…that is Parliament’s responsibility. The job of the PM is to inspire and motivate Canadians to seek their higher angels…and be the best we can be.

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    Hairpin Sally says:

    “That’s a ratpile of laziness. What he’s preaching is a lifestyle of cardboard boxes down by the river. And he’s preaching all this from a mansion.” – John Lydon a/k/a Johnny Rotten

    The real winner in the US election is the 45% who cast their anti-votes – i.e. they didn’t vote – a much larger number than Trumpers or Clintonites. This can be blamed on self-styled revolutionaries like Russell Brand – “I’ve never voted, never will”. Drug and sex addiction are anti-political acts and good hair can only take you so far. Kids: endless of bong hits and compulsively masturbating to Fifty Shades of Grey is not political action.

    Every man is just a man. He is born of a woman, will live for a flash of time, and then die, his body worm food. Justin Trudeau is not the Son of God. To say such is blasphemy. Donald Trump is not the Devil. Just one of the very small number of billionaires on earth looking to get a few billion richer. (Re. Russia, Putin is a billionaire too.)

    God will not save Justin Trudeau as long his followers are encouraged to worship the man, like a god, and follow every order, however ridiculous e.g. shed tears for Fidel Castro. Pagan idolatry. God will not save the United States as long her god is money. The blind masses follow blind leaders. It will not end well.

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    Dave Lutz says:

    50 years ago my brother and I left the US and moved here. We were two of 50,000 well educated young people who disagreed with our government genocidial behavior in Vietnam Nam. Before the election I kept reading about the people who said they would move to Canada if Orange Hitler won, I have yet to hear of the of the first arrival.

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