DON'T let them tell you it can't be DONEI'll grant that the statement applies to Layton's political fortunes: DON'T let them tell you that the country's Socialist political party, a perennial also-also-ran, can't become Her Majesty's loyal opposition--obviously, when the moment is opportune, that can be done (or DONE). As for the bulk of his political agenda, though, the one articulated in the letter he supposedly crafted all by himself while at death's door (Christie Blatchford shoots down that one post haste), the one that calls for the government taking money from those who can and do, and redistributing it to those who can't and/or won't— that, as we know, is a recipe for disaster (see Greece et al). Although we Canadians have already swallowed far too much of that mess o' socialist potage than is good for us, our declining to put Layton in the top spot managed to buy us at least a little more time. One shudders to think where we'd be today if Layton had actually won: stuck with a rudderless party full of bright-eyed—and unqualified—newbies who wuv "green" and the Palestinians in equal measure.
Aside from Blatchford, I think the most feet-on-the-ground assessment I heard yesterday was provided by former prime minister Jean Chretien. Invited by a sob sister on CTV News to weigh in on the "great man's" character and impact, Chretien declined to luxuriate in the salty pond of tears. Layton was a "working politician," said Chretien. No more. No less.
In a way, that was the biggest compliment Chretien, another "working politician," could pay the man, but it was not in keeping with the effusive words of beatification the CTVer was going for (and that one heard practically everywhere else in the verklempt Canucki media).