Canada Returns to Globalism

Today marked the changing of the guard in Ottawa, as newly minted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was sworn in along with his new cabinet, finally ending our long national night of reactionary rule — a kind of mini-Dark Age. Canada is back on track, and I couldn’t be happier about it.

There is a lot of excitement about Trudeau’s selection for cabinet positions, which is also attracting attention from around the world after our long absence. It reflects Canada’s renewed commitment to globalism. The Minister of National Defence is a Sikh, as is also the Minister of Innovation, Science, and the Economy. The Minister of Justice is aboriginal, as is the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans. The Minister of Democratic Reforms is Afghanistan-born. Trudeau not only tried to make his cabinet a true reflection of the diversity of Canadian society, but also, as a self-avowed “feminist” himself, has achieved gender balance with half the ministerial appointments going to women.

It’s not only a “changing of the guard” in terms of politics, but a generational change as well. The so-called “Boomers” have had their day, and we aren’t likely again in future to see a return to the kind of autocratic and reactionary rule represented by Stephen Harper and his Conservative Party. The last ten years could, in fact, be interpreted as the last gasp of the “Old Stock” Canadians — as Mr. Harper liked to think of as the Conservative “base” — the desperate attempt of a dying breed to preserve themselves against their own passing and irrelevance. That was reflected in the fact that the Conservative Party’s policies had no appeal outside their traditional “base”. Appealing to “Old Stock” inevitably finds fewer and fewer living ears to actually hear it. That’s the practical side of the “denial of death”.

The excitement is palpable, as this CTV interview with some national observers attests. I’m mildly optimistic, at this point, that Canada will resume its traditional role as a good and responsible (and that means, responsive) global citizen. I’m also pleased to see the repudiation of the Conservative’s austerity fraud, and that the new government has made addressing socioeconomic inequality and renewing the commonwealth a national priority as a first step in fixing the “democratic deficit”. That will also become the main task of the young Afghan-born Maryam Monef (who is also the youngest cabinet member ever). It’s also a very positive move for Trudeau to invite the leaders of the opposition parties to join the government at the Paris Climate Talks after the stinginess of the Harper regime in sharing power or taking a consensual approach to politics.

Mr. Harper and his Conservative Party seem to have neglected the facts of human mortality, and that the mortality of the generations and of the “Old Stock” eventually reduces the appeal of Conservative policies. Mr. Harper should have spent more time reading Aristotle, perhaps, and less time reading up on Stalin.

Canada today may be one of the first nations in which a new generation is coming into its inheritance and into its own, along with a different sensibility. That’s something to watch for.



5 responses to “Canada Returns to Globalism”

  1. LittleBigMan says :

    No good option candidates for us here in America, though. Candidates keep attacking each other instead of discussing breadbasket issues. Pretty much like an organizational meeting I attended recently.

  2. Scott Preston says :

    Some interesting changes of name for the ministries today. But the one that caught my eye, especially is the change of name for the Department of Forieign Affairs. It’s been renamed as “Global Affairs Canada” — a significant name change. So has “Industry Canada” been dropped and replaced with “Innovation, Science and Economics”, and “Environment Canada” has been amended to “Ministry of Environment and Climate Change”.

    The name changes reveal a definite shift in political philosophy — especially a new planetary focus.

    Also, the public scientists have been officially unmuzzled and ungagged, and the press has been unleashed. Welcome changes.

  3. abdulmonem says :

    Any change, anywhere gives me joy and hope that the possibility of change for the better is present everywhere. Trudeau walks his talk heralding a new trend in the political arena of hypocrisy His compassion for others is outstanding in joining the political few that have feeling for the dislocated and unfortunate and those who are poor. I am convinced that the west can do a lot in the way of elevating the distress of the developing countries who were kept in that state through the subjection of the west despite all the talk of liberation and democracy. The deteriorating situation in Iraq is a glaring example of the ill-intention of America which could have done a lot of good to that misfortunate country by only putting honest people in its reign. The events that are taking place in the country show that injustice can not continue and that health and not sickness is the rule of the land.

    • Scott Preston says :

      Well, it’s still early in his term, and we’ll see how long his “sunny ways” last. So far, so good. But it’s only been 4 days since the new government was sworn in. So far its fufilled 4 of its 184 promises of democratic reform. One-a-day isn’t bad, so far.

  4. abdulmonem says :

    Let us keep our fingers crossed.

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