Thursday, November 24, 2016

Canada and United States, Celebrity-Culture Governments

"There should be no preferential access or appearance of preferential access accorded to individuals or organizations because they have made financial contributions to politicians and political parties."
Trudeauian guidelines for ethical guidelines

"Like Trump, Trudeau is less a leader than a mascot. Like Trump's following, Trudeau's following sometimes comes off like a Dear Leader cult. Like Trump, Trudeau routinely elicits in his political enemies a hysterical incoherence. As with Trump, it is not known whether Trudeau has ever met a dictator he didn't like."
Terry Glavin, journalist, political commentator

"It’s silly to suggest there’s any avoidance of conflict by having your family run the interests. He talks to his family all the time."
"[It’s] unthinkable in recent history [that] there’s the possibility of a president being able to affect his own personal financial interests, conceivably to the detriment of the general public."
Trevor Potter, former U.S Federal Election Commission chairman
Donald Trump with his sons Donald Trump Jr., from left, Eric Trump, his wife Melania Trump and his daughters Tiffany Trump and Ivanka Trump (Andrew Harrer/Bloomberg)
The international reaction to the successful competitor in the November 8 U.S. presidential election was swift, alarmed and agonized. Governments and politicians in Europe in particular expressed their dismay at the new president-elect of the United States being an uncouth braggart, a man whose penchant for blurting out the uninformed opinion he is convinced is always right. A man who has earned the reputation of an unscrupulous businessman, a bigot and a sexist preparing to move into the White House appears to be everyone's nightmare.

Sensibly, while the Mexican president expressed his disfavour of a man who has labelled Mexicans crooks and rapists, the Prime Minister of Canada has withheld any comments that might conceivably be construed as critical of the new boss on the continent. But then, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has in the past expressed his personal admiration for the Communist Party of China, and he has restrained himself from criticizing Russia's President Vladimir Putin, while expressing his family's chumminess with Fidel Castro and his grip on Cuba.

Goodness gracious, a freshman, untutored Liberal politician turned Prime Minister, prepared to restore Canada's relations with the Islamic Republic of Iran, with the Russian Federation, with the People's Republic of China, after the previous Conservative-led government held them all at arm's length and reacted to their internationally peace-aversive actions with condemnation. So if a Conservative mindset is one that finds fault with rigid authoritarianism and dictators, it might seem passing strange that a Liberal, open-minded, feminist-, gay-, recreational drug-inclusive sees merit in befriending them.
Backdropped by a monument depicting Cuba's revolutionary hero Ernesto "Che" Guevara, Canada Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, second right front, and his wife Sophie Gregoire-Trudeau, are accompanied by Cuba's Vice Prime Minister Miguel Diaz Canel, right front, during a ceremony at the Jose Marti Monument n Havana, Cuba, Tuesday, Nov. 15, 2016. (AP Photo/Ramon Espinosa)

It might even appear as though the Liberal and his government have more in common with the alt-right Republican agenda than those expressing traditional Conservative values. And that appearance might just be a reflection of reality. As for Canadians so popularly decrying the ascendancy of Donald Trump, smugly comparing his addiction to adulation from the masses, to their own Justin Trudeau; in the process they overlook the latter's addiction to graciously smiling selfies and clamouring admirers.

If Donald Trump is addicted to showmanship, strangely enough so is his Canadian counterpart; thespian born and bred, both with that proverbial silver spoon, inheriting wealth and solidly self-entitled to whatever life guarantees the one-percenters of the world. Perhaps the one big difference is that in saying whatever enters his feeble mind, Donald Trump says it like he sees it. Justin Trudeau has accommodated himself to the fact that his impulses to showcase his lack of intelligence works better when deceit and hypocrisy enter the picture.

With Trump what you see and what he says is what there is. With Trudeau, what he says is what he means at the time, but remains subject to change at a whim's notice. As far as addictions go, each is addicted to financial gain and neither sees anything amiss in carrying on with their personal business as though nothing stands in their way, certainly not the obligations of governing demanding a separation between personal gain and administering the affairs of a country; it is only third-grade republics that loot the public trust. Supposedly.

President-elect Donald Trump

If Trump is arrogant with self-applause, so too is Trudeau. They do indeed have much in common, including their politics. Selling out to the highest bidder is a universal trait both have cultivated to perfection. Trump set up a bogus 'college' to teach would-be entrepreneurs envious of his success and willing to absorb his blueprints for acquisition of riches, ripping off and hoodwinking the gullible. Trudeau made himself available as a public speaker, ripping off charitable organizations with stiff speaking fees eager to host him in the pretense that he is erudite as a former private school acting coach -- both coasting on the brand of name-recognition.

Trudeau's cabinet takes his admonition that they behave scrupulously morally as holy writ by engaging in pay-to-play fundraisers where cabinet ministers appear and the Liberal party benefits financially, trading privileged access for contributions. But then, they need look no further than the example their champion himself provides, with Justin Trudeau, the Prime Minister of Canada  hosting private dinners with Chinese billionaires who just incidentally surrendered a 'donation' in six figures to the Trudeau Foundation, and promised a $50,000 statue of Pierre Elliot Trudeau.

Since becoming Prime Minister this scion of wealth and privilege who, as a Member of Parliament continued to hire himself out as a guest speaker to public-supported groups and charities for tens of thousands of dollars, has focused on overturning as many of the previous government's signature legacy projects as he could manage. Many of those reversals were election promises, and some of them have resulted in Justin Trudeau's government highlighting the hypocrisy of those promises by instituting replacement policies not in Canada's best interests.

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