Posted by: Nathan M. | June 15, 2009

Who is Ignatieff, and What Does He Want?

Who is this Ignatieff? And what in the world does he stand for? Well, there’s the question. What in the world does he stand for? Nobody really knows for sure. This is whypic-240-1200143 Ignatieff is creating such a stir. He is, in every sense of the words, a professional polititican. He talks smart, weighs his moves carefully, and is one of the most intelligent politicians that this country has seen in a very long time. His dealing with the repurcussions of Dion’s time at the reigns of the liberal party, and his quick distancing of the liberals from the unpopular coalition proves Ignatieff’s abilities as a politician. The problem is that, for many Canadians, being a good politician is far from good enough. We all want to see Ignatieff as a man who loves his country, who has a passion for something other than playing the game of politics. Why does he play the game? What is his angle?

Recently, Ignatieff has told Harper that he must meet four expectations in order for the Liberals to continue to prop up the Conservative government. These four items include 1. EI reform; 2. The knowledge of how much infrastructure funding is being spent, not just announced; 3. A plan to dig us out of the deficit; and 4. A plan to deal with the isotope crisis. All four of these demands are not actually all that hard for Harper to meet, as long as Harper is able to do so in a not-so-straightforward manor. This, in fact, is Ignatieff’s intention. The real problem for Harper in these demands is the fact that meeting all of these demands continues to make it very clear who is actually in control of the government in the eyes of Canadians. And this is exactly what Ignatieff has worked for and is accomplishing-he has been usurping the control of the government, without having to actually call an election. This is the type of operation that is done by a political genius, and Ignatieff is definitely that. But again, the problem is that although he is very good at what he does, we do not really know why he does what he does. I will say this however-he has gained my respect. Not necessarily my loyalty, nor my trust-but definitely my respect.

Further Readings

Ignatieff demands more from PM

Ignatieff to Harper: Give answers or face defeat

Kelly McParland: Ignatieff’s decision is no decision

John Ivison: Conservatives on a cliff edge, and about to step over

Ignatieff: ’The Liberal Party is not seeking an election’

New polls show federal Liberals with narrow lead

Ignatieff demands answers

Harper responds to Ignatieff



  1. Ignatieff seems to think he’s calling the shots at this point, doesn’t he? In a way, the future of the Canadian government sort of rests in his decision because the desired action of the other parties requires some form of Liberal support. The NDP and Bloc seem to think the Liberals will eventually grant them support, but Ignatieff does not want to be in a coalition. A government that delivers real change is not a mish-mash of various parties. Today Ignatieff gave the impression that he expected Harper to answer to the Liberal leader, however, Ignatieff hasn’t even offered any real plan for Canada to fix it’s problems himself. He’s smart and he is now a strong key player in the future of Canada. But he needs to propose something that Canadians will get behind. And in order to receive any loyalty from me he must somehow show real loyalty to this country. I’m not ready to give that yet.

  2. I can understand that, it is hard to really know where Ignatieff stands. There’s only one thing that I would challenge you on-since Canada is a multicultural society, and we pride ourselves on the fact that we are able to work together with many different beliefs and cultures, why should our political system be any different? In a country like Canada, the only real way for us to have a political system that actually represents the people is to have a mish-mash of various parties. To me, what Canada needs is for the different parties to work together. Not lay aside their differences, because that is what defines us as Canadians-the fact that despite differences we are able to work together. But the problem is that all of the parties are self-obsessed, and refuse to cooperate with each-other unless it benefits themselves, regardless of the benefit to the nation as a whole.

  3. We are a multiculteral society and are best represented by the various parties in our political system. What I was commenting on was the possibility of a coalition government, which the NDP and the Bloc have tried to push twice in this last year. A patched up government is not the way to deal with the issues we are faced with right now in Canada. We need a solid leading government in power, whether it is the Liberals, Conservatives, NDP, or the Bloc (not likely). No matter how much the parties involved in a coalition government agree with each other against the party they vote down, their plans for once they are in power WILL be different. Each coalition party will try to be dominant and nothing will end up getting done. Therefore, a single leading party needs to be in power that each party will work with in the House of Commons and debate with during Question Period. Through this method, the government will have direction, yet also have the opinions and concerns of other parties and Canadian citizens represented, ensuring that certain legislation will pass and others will not. This is the way the Canadian government works and it works well. Obviously, Harper’s government isn’t something that the opposing parties can work with and get behind, so maybe we do in fact need an election. I’m glad it’s not this summer, but I think we need one.

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