Second Thots

Sometimes one has to step back, take pause, and have some "second thots"

Wednesday, December 06, 2006


Dion's Achilles' heel?

Many observers have talked about Dion's lack of popularity in his own province, his own record on the environment, and his lack of charisma as possible shortcomings preventing him from becoming prime minister. These, among others, may well prove to be hurdles he can't overcome. However, digging a bit beyond some of these more superficial weaknesses, Dion's quick refusal to denounce his French citizenship may tell us more about the potential for his downfall than anything else.

In justifying his choice to remain loyal to two countries, Dion says that no one should question his loyalty to one. But that's the problem. It's our duty as citizens to question our leaders, their motivations, and their loyalties. If we can't question them on these things, just what can we question them on?

Which brings us to a potential Achilles' heel for Dion. Throughout the Liberal leadership race, Dion's reaction to genuine questions about his qualifications and record were always met with the attitude: "How dare you question my integrity and abilities. I'm Stephane Dion!"

On no file is this self-perpetuating arrogance more acute than on the environment. Any suggestion that Dion's record with the Liberal government on the environment was atrocious is met with indignation, disbelief, and even anger. When Michael Ignatieff raised the issue during a leadership debate, Stephane Dion acted like a child whose marbles were just stolen from him. How dare anyone do this to him! How dare anyone criticize the great Dion!

So, when Stephane Dion decides that Stephane Dion doesn't need to denounce his ties to another country's flag in order to prove his loyalty to ours, it's not something new or out of the ordinary for him. There's no need to question him about it. He's Stephane Dion. To Stephane Dion, at least, that's all that matters.

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