, 08.08.2023 02:57 PM

My latest: MAGA and TruAnon are the same thing

One has been caught making remarks that are intolerant and sexist. He’s facing multiple criminal prosecutions.

The other has similarly gotten into trouble for words and behaviour that are sexist and racist – and he’s been found guilty of violating two federal statutes while in power.

We are speaking, of course, about Donald Trump in the first instance, and Justin Trudeau in the second. And what is remarkable isn’t that both men committed misogynistic and racist acts — and broken the rules.

What’s remarkable is that their partisans — MAGA with Trump, TruAnon with Trudeau — have stayed with them. Even when both have revealed themselves to be the worst kind of politician.

Regrettably, politicians are regularly caught doing awful things: Racism, sexism, breaking the law. Happens all the time. It’s been happening since Jesus was a little fella, in fact.

But why — why, why, why? — does a segment of voters stick with two men who are so clearly unfit for any public office? Why do TruAnon and MAGA forgive every sin committed by their cult leaders?

It is bizarre and frustrating, to be sure. Most of us don’t understand it.

In Trudeau’s case, a majority voted against him in 2019 and 2021. In Trump’s case, a larger number of Americans also voted against him.

But their hard-core supporters remain stubbornly committed to Trudeau and Trump, arguably more than ever before. Despite the overwhelming evidence that has been marshalled against them.

Paradoxically, it is that evidence — allegedly breaking the law, breaking moral and ethical codes — that seems to have strengthened, not diminished, the loyalty of Trump and Trudeau’s partisans.

The very things that have pushed the majority away from Trump and Trudeau are the same things that have consolidated their grip on their respective parties. How can that be?

Three reasons.

One, scandals have little to no impact on many voters these days. We in the media and other politicos are mainly to blame. Citizens have seen the media — and political adversaries — cry “scandal” far too often. And, as in the parable about the boy who cried wolf, that cry just doesn’t change many minds anymore.

Unless Trudeau and Trump’s core see their man led away to a cell, wearing an orange pantsuit and handcuffs, they don’t believe what they’re hearing. Even if the evidence is overwhelming.

Two, social media. In the good old days, before Twitter and Facebook — which, in the latter case, is now actively censoring any Canadian news — it was harder to identify and organize partisans. It was hard work.

In the social media era, however, hardcore Trump or Trudeau fanatics can find each other — instantaneously, for free — just by typing in a hashtag. When they do, the committed partisans tend to stay within their own echo chamber, disregarding any evidence that is critical of their leader.

They start to regard disagreement as treason. They start to believe in conspiracies. And they see those on the other side as the literal enemy, who must be destroyed at all costs.

Three, and finally, Trudeau and Trump lead movements, not political parties. Trump has literally called MAGA a movement — and Trudeau has repeatedly called his TruAnon base the same thing.

In real political parties, control comes from the bottom up. In a movement, power comes from the top down. And, so, the leader at the top needs to be defended at all costs.

Which is why Canada and the United States remain saddled with Justin Trudeau and Donald Trump.

And it’s why both men — despite the evidence, despite what the majority think — aren’t disappearing anytime soon.


  1. Warren,

    Blind loyalty to despots has existed forever. That’s how we got at least one world war. This is but an extension of that. Fools will be fools.

    • Douglas W says:

      Is JT running out of runway?

      We were instructed to leave the kids alone.
      To respect the family’s privacy.
      And yet, there he is, posting photos on social media.
      This means PMJT is down to one last card to play: the sympathy card.
      Never good, when you have to play the sympathy card.

  2. Douglas W says:

    Trudeau will make it to 2025.
    Trump won’t.

  3. Curious V says:

    But, the fact remains that in Canada, the Conservatives voted for a Trump-like fringe politician leaving little choice for moderates. I understand he’s tried to quell fears of his extreme points of view, but make no mistake – PP is the same thing as Danielle Smith, his base as emersed in conspiracy theory as those who proudly align with Trump. Truanon, I don’t know what it is, to be honest. Maybe some are too rigid in their loyalty, but they’re left with little choice when the conservatives elect a Trump-like conservative, who, just like Trump, panders to the fringe in his party lending credence to extremes and conspiracy theory.

    • Martin Dixon says:

      And, there ladies and gentlemen, is exhibit one for Warren’s thesis. He sounds PRECISELY like all the MAGA types that continue to support T because they don’t like Biden.

      • Curious V says:

        So we should support people we don’t like, instead of somebody we like, maybe a bit less than we used to, but seems like a better choice than the alternative – what’s your point. Isn’t that just ordinary democracy?

        • Martin Dixon says:

          No one is telling you to do that. There are MANY alternatives. NDP, Green, stay home, etc. In 2015 I would have picked Mulcair over Justin all day long. At least he had a functioning brain.

    • EsterHazyWasALoser says:

      “But, the fact remains that in Canada, the Conservatives voted for a Trump-like fringe politician”. Perhaps you could provide an example? (Because I don’t think you can).

      • Martin Dixon says:

        I would assume he is talking about Alberta. It hasn’t been in the news much since the election. I would think that if Smith is currently destroying the province, it would make the CBC? So silly and hyperbolic.

  4. Tim White says:

    Shame on you Mr. Kinsella.

    If M. Trudeau loses the next election, if he runs, he will make a somewhat gracious speech and turn the reigns of power over.

    Donald Trump denied democracy and sent his supporters out to do his bidding. People died.

    There’s a big difference.

    To equate the two men is monstrous nonsense.

    • Daryl says:

      Thanks, Tim, for the reality check. Well said. (Speaking as one who, no, didn’t vote Liberal and almost certainly won’t next time. And if I do, it will be holding my nose while trying not to vomit; actually, I don’t think I’d be able to live with myself. For the love of God, can we please just get a viable and serious 3rd federal party already?)

    • Martin Dixon says:

      He is equating their hard core followers. There really is no difference. Never has been for me since Justin revealed his true colours when he assaulted that MP in the House a few months into his reign. That was when it was over for me. Your mileage likely varies of course.

    • Tim,

      With respect, you’ve missed the boat entirely. This post is not about Trudeau and Trump. It’s narrowly about the mindset and mentality of their voters as regards proforma unconditional loyalty and a willingness to believe as true absolutely everything that comes out of each of their yaps. Period. Warren is dead on here re: these particular shared traits.

  5. Curious V says:

    Trudeau’s apologized for his mistakes. About the blackface thing, well I asked my black friends, some African, some raised in Canada, what they thought of it. They said it was in poor taste, a horrible mistake, they were disgusted. But, they also said, they felt his apology was sincere, that he was very young at the time, and they accept his apology. Trump doesn’t apologize for anything, he’s enabled by fake news, infotainment that moralizes his attempt to stymie the transition of power. Trump flat out lies about the election, claiming he was robbed of a win, and he’s enabled by news like fox, and all kinds of echo-chamber chatter in social media. I really think this comparison is a stretch, it’s not believable or realistic – Trump and Trudeau are legions apart.

    • Martin Dixon says:

      You are making his point. Justin was TWENTY-NINE at one of those incidents and he DOESN’T REMEMBER if he did it after.

    • Douglas W says:

      My friends of African heritage were appalled when the blackface revelation broke.
      They’re still appalled, and they don’t think his apology was sincere.
      In fact, they don’t think anything about him is sincere.
      And they were hardcore Liberals.

  6. western view says:

    Movements (cults) are led by self anointed “chosen ones” who are charismatic and able to con supporters into blind loyalty. They love attention and don’t countenance competition, so identifying and grooming strong people as a succession planning process is unthinkable.

    Comments recently posted on this platform have wondered if Trudeau would sooner run HMS Liberal into a coral reef before taking one for the team and resigning. It sure looks like it, and I can’t believe that the movers and shakers in the Party are letting it happen.

    • Curious V says:

      Sounds like Poilievre.

      • western view says:

        Sounds like Poilievre, how?
        The Conservatives are spending the summer talking to Canadians about things that matter. Sky high food prices, carbon taxes that are contributing to inflationary pressures. Unaffordable housing prices. Students living in their cars.
        What’s yer guy doing? Oh, he reorganized his Cabinet to find better ways to tell Canadians what a wonderful job he is doing.

      • Martin Dixon says:

        Curious, seriously, what are you talking about?

    • WV,

      Of course they are. They’re cowards, wimps and ass kissers on their best day. No Liberal leadership review ever by caucus vote. Not happening.

      • western view says:

        The Liberal back bench have lots of leverage now if they could find the guts to use it.
        No Cabinet promotions coming for them and based on the trend line of recent polling information, there is a reasonable chance that some back benchers will lose their seats.
        A perfect spot to be able to tell the PMO to go to hell.

  7. Sean says:

    I saw them as being very similar up until Jan 06th 2021.

    However: Trump and his people took a step into darkness that I don’t think Justin’s team – for all their incompetent foolishness – would ever take. If the Tories win a majority of seats or form a governing coalition, as they most likely will, Justin’s team will finally walk away.

    A few other differences. Justin apologizes for some things. Trump apologizes for nothing. Justin is facing no challenges from within his party, while Trump faces many. Most of Trump’s bullshit is on purpose. Most of Justin’s bullshit is by accident.

    Make no mistake… Justin Trudeau is one of the filthiest, most miserable cockroaches to accidentally crawl into Canada’s history books…. he and his team will forever be remembered as such. But I wouldn’t bring him down to the level of Trump, who is genuinely dangerous and is probably responsible for hundreds of thousands of unnecessary deaths through his management of COVID and other actions such as Jan 06th.

    • Martin Dixon says:

      Three small bones to pick:

      1. Justin apologies aren’t sincere
      2. Blaming his bullshit on stupidity is not the strongest defense
      3. Dealing with Covid was mostly a state issue and T was responsible for Operation Warpspeed which many give him props for.

  8. Bill says:

    JT’s time is up. He needs to resign or be defeated. Nonetheless he is nowhere close to the danger that DT is to the US, and by extention to the world.

  9. WestGuy says:

    My sense of Warren’s column is that it is less about the individuals and more about the supporters. Debate all you want about the merits of comparing Trump and Trudeau but you can’t say that there are a lot of similarities between the MAGA and TruAnon crowds. I have friends who are die-hard liberals and the mental gymnastics they went through to justify all of Justin’s controversies was staggering. Moreso because you know that had a conservative politician worn blackface just once (or groped a reporter or, or, or etc) they would have lost their fucking minds. In terms of supporters, Trump weaponized polarization in the US and Trudeau is doing the same in Canada. But maybe I’m just a racist misogynist Westerner so of course I’d say that.

  10. Thomas D’Arcy O’Donnell / salamander says:

    Perhaps I might return..
    Will leave you & the more hysterical of your commenters with this simple suggestion..

    Consider an ‘adult’ & coherent bit of simple French to English translation by neutral exemplars capable of such minor challenges..

    The hysterical misinformation & disinformation of former MP (& pretend ‘Public Servant’) Ms Candice Bergen & wannabe Prime Minister ‘Public Servant) MP Pierre Poilievre are disgusting Character Attacks / Classic & pathetic Propaganda Tactic deployed by ‘Captured / Sellout MainstreamMedia. You know this & you can differentiate Fact from Fiction & other forms of Bullshit

    I have no idea re your French capability..
    I suggest a Qualified Translator / I worked with the finest Medical Translators in Canada while producing Accredited CME – Continuing Medical Education in both languages.. surely you know an Accredited Legal Translator or two or 3 ? Non ?

    The process starts with French Transcription of course.. a crucial stage to be completed & any Professional Translator will need a digital Video Clip as well..
    They will consider context of course

    How would you like to defend yourself as A Senior Lawyer
    & have to admit to a Judge that your Public Slanderous Comments have been based solely on Partisan Political Propaganda you heard & read about via the ‘echo chamber of Social Media ravings.. & varying versions of such by Elected Public Servants.. one of feels is a way to enhance his chance to become Prime Minister of Your Country & Ours ..

    Would you even try to.. ? Of course you would not !

    So consider my suggestion .. thanks

    I tell you right now.. that you’ll be among the very first to know Publicly if this 71 year old Beacher & non partisan Indy Media Warrior has to do this for you..
    But rest assured.. will give you Full Credit & many of your Commenters as well for helping me to the Tipping Point where I just became fed up ..

    I like & respect you mightily.. as neighbour, advocate for justice, a Proven Champion against Racism & Misogyny & no hard feelings for blocking me on X – the former Twitter

    & have a nice day eh .. PS.. loved the Ontario Barn Painting ! ‍☠️

    • Martin Dixon says:

      salamander, I have read this a few times and I am not sure what you are saying here. And I mean no disrespect because normally I get your point. I am sure I am not alone but maybe I am.

      • Thanks Martin..
        At issue is (& let’s be very clear about this)
        What did Mr Trudeau & the woman interview him ‘actually say’ during the specific 20 or so seconds in question ?

        Seems ‘the nut of it’ to me .. non ?
        To you ? Mr Kinsella ?
        In the process of Live French Only Dialogue,
        recorded on Camera & Sound recorded during an interview – The ‘Context or Nature & Topic between Interviewer & Mr Trudeau was obviously in regard to what we all know (or to varying extents know) about the Convoy itself, subsequent Occupation, & the combination of certain ‘factions’ during the ongoing Covid Pandemic.

        Thus return to my original comment re The Process of Transcribing Every Single Word Spoken ie ‘a Text Document’ – This is Verbatim Transcription en Francajs

        A bonafide Professional Legal Translator is the gold standard accomplish.

        It’s then child’s play for English Only readers to benefit from or utilize the Video with Picture & Conversation of the interview ..

        c’mon man ! Wouldn’t you like to know what he ‘actually said’ ? In a fictitious Court Of Law would he not Insist On Submitting Evidence of this nature – to wit – A Brief Segment of French Video – matching Validated Translation

        Out of sheer curiosity.. what do you or even Mr Kinsella or myself validate ourselves ? What are your sources ? You know.. the video you watched, or myself… & then what ? What did we think.. did we watch it again after seeing & hearing all the immediate outrage.. ? Deserved or Non? And then what.. ? It became part of the very lexicon of ‘conservative’ Truth’.. a Historic ‘Gotcha’ a ‘a viral mutation.. that keeps on giving !

        Mr Trudeau may regret his actual words there.. & has said so. . which by th bye is now translated as ‘he actually admits he called us all Misogynists & Extremists !’

        It’s a Historic Case History Opportunity for those who appreciate Great Moments In Disinformation & Misinformation

        If I am correct, the only defence against me counting coup on Mr Kinsella is ‘The Doug Ford Gambit” now on full display re ‘The GreenBelt Play’ .. I cannot envision Mr Kinsella in any such scenario..

        He’s a ‘doer’ – he knows how to get things done right
        If I have to do it.. I’ll get it done right too
        I have street cred re meticulous Eng to French & French to English .. in all things / Hi End Corporate, Medical, Financial, Documentary, Communications, Media

        When the TSE went public & Brokers, Traders, Banks worldwide viewed the IPO Video in their packages and/or Online.. Who could you imagine .. wrote The Script, Directed the English Editing & Soundtrack, ensured & secured all of the whole deal for My Client & His Clients & their Clients.. yes, men.. I have the cred any Court Of Law can accept..

        • Martin Dixon says:

          Sorry, salamander, that did not help. For starters, I am not sure what interview you are talking about. To be fair, they are usually so fawning, I can’t watch. They usually look like they need to get a room. I assume it was this maybe?

          “They don’t believe in science/progress and are very often misogynistic and racist. It’s a very small group of people, but that doesn’t shy away from the fact that they take up some space.”

          “This leads us, as a leader and as a country, to make a choice: Do we tolerate these people? Over 80% of the population of Quebec have done their duty by getting the shot. They are obviously not the issue in this situation.”

          If you are saying there is some context that should be provided there or it was not transalated, fine. Not sure what that would be but I will give that to you. I certainly believe that is what was in his heart though, if he indeed has one. Most narcissists don’t. But it was all over for me on May 18, 2016 after I had decided to give him a chance. I saw it live. No context required. So, everything after that is conversation. A VERY long one.

    • Douglas W says:

      Mr. Salamander,
      Your rambling posting … way too long + confusing.
      Next time, short and to the point, far better.

  11. Chris says:

    Most of us that still support Trudeau and the LIberals do it mainly because we look at the alternative and think “Yeah, no thanks.”

    The number of actual “tru-anon” would be a tiny fraction of the millions of MAGAs in the US.

  12. Robert Sword says:

    I’m a dick.

  13. EsterHazyWasALoser says:

    Maybe some of the posters should read the whole column before commenting. Mr Kinsella isn’t saying Mr Trump and Mr Trudeau are the same; he is saying that they both have a following that displays a similar mindset. IMHO, one could go so far as to say that they are (or people in their camp are) fostering a “cult of personality” with respect to their leadership.

  14. Isaac Samuel says:

    When Trudeau leads a revolt and tries to take over Parliament, then this comparison will make sense. Until then, it’s apples and oranges.

  15. Gilbert says:

    The amount of people who continue to support the worst Canadian prime minister ever is shocking. I’m right-wing, but if I were given the choice between a hard-working, ethical, intelligent, caring and humble social democrat and a lazy, unethical, unintelligent, uncaring and arrogant conservative, I would definitely prefer the social democrat.

    It’s time to stop blind support for a particular ideology and also consider qualifications and character. Who can honestly say that Mr. Trudeau is serving the Canadian people well? If he were honest with himself, he’d accept that he’s not qualified to run the country and resign.

    We need a leader who is loyal to Canada and not to the interests of another nation or organization. We also need a leader who cares about democracy, cares about ordinary Canadians and who understands the issues that most affect Canadians today.

    Blind support for any leader is dangerous. Neither Mr. Trump nor Mr. Trudeau believe they are responsible for their actions. In the case of Mr. Trudeau, he’s good at apologizing, but who truly believes his apologies are sincere? They’re as superficial as he is.

  16. Curious V says:

    The real comparison is that Trump and Poilievre are similar. Both obnoxious and lippy, both of them coddled the anti-vaxers and conspiracy theorists, they both appeal to the fringe in their party – that’s the real comparison. Trudeau is a moderate who has nothing in common with Trump, and the people blinded by partisan zeal are the right-wing fringe who support Poilievre.

  17. Curious V says:

    Trump and Poilievre both play to a base that’s saturated with conspiracy theory – it’s their answer to everything, that there’s some kind of a conspiracy when they don’t make any sense, which is most of the time.

    • Curious,

      Take note that most politicians (not Trudeau) actually get better while doing the job. Maybe if your lucky, HimselfTM finally was briefed on whose funeral he went to in Japan. That was mighty painful video to watch but par for the course where he’s concerned…

      Pierre had made mistakes and errors in judgment. No question about it. Do you really think that he’ll keep making those same mistakes in the general? Not a chance. As for your guy, we’ll see. Don’t bet the farm on the political evolution of Justin Trudeau. Hasn’t even started to happen so far.

      • Curious V says:

        Trudeau’s a great campaigner – that’s his strength. In the general election the gap will narrow, but I’m not sure it will be enough to beat Poilievre. They should be releasing ads to coincide with the conservatives introduction of PP, but they aren’t, and that’s a mistake.

        • Curious V,

          Yup, no question that the gap will narrow at least somewhat in the campaign. Your ads point is bang on. We’re releasing ads while the Liberal machine sleeps not so soundly. IMHO, it’s the separation thing. My guess is he never saw it coming, thought his other relationship dynamics would be tolerated, if not accepted and when they weren’t…so, the guy has been knocked off balance without wind. Will bet his heart is no longer in the game, since that body blow. In short, not so sure he sticks around until 2024-26.

  18. Gilbert says:

    Justin Trudeau is not a moderate. He’s so far to the left that he could easily be in the NDP. He’s bankrupting the nation with out of control spending, more and more taxes, high inflation and a greater divide between rich and poor. If he were a moderate, he would not praise Communist dictators like Fidel Castro.

  19. Curious V says:

    Trump and Poilievre’s theme song, since they and their base have so much in common.


  20. Derek Pearce says:

    WK methinks you went a touch hyperbolic with this one. You know I ain’t ever voting for the guy, but if/when the Liberals lose the next election you will not see thousands of fanatical Trudeau supporters storm Parliament trying to overturn the election results. Trump is a narcissist like Trudeau, true, but he’s on a whole other level of sheer malevolence.

  21. Gilbert says:

    Maybe we won’t see supporters of Justin Trudeau storming parliament, but it appears we have a prime minister who doesn’t care about foreign interference in our elections when it’s to his benefit. That’s a serious problem.

  22. Washington Irving says:

    My God this is brilliant. My cousin, a dedicated member of the Liberal party for two decades, moved to America in 2010. With citizenship in 2014 he joined the RNC.

    I could not understand how a Canadian CBC/Liberal wag could support the grand olde party. As the MAGA years rolled on, and his support for Mr. Orange is new Skin grew, it hit me that he is first and foremost a member of the “winning” party and he is a follower, not a leader. Public Policy, economic beliefs, ethics, community standards, nothing matters for these people, and they are legion.

    It’s so unpleasant to come to the realization that a significant percentage of all people are not duped into joining these cult like political parties, the RNC in the US and the Liberals in Canada. They are the same people; they are your neighbours, and your family members, your work colleagues – and they would throw you to the wolves if their leader told them to do it.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *