It's not hard to see how Freeland might seem appealing as a means of papering over the Libs' disconnection from the general public:
Chrystia Freeland, winner of the 2013 National Business Book Award for her book Plutocrats: The Rise of the New Global Super-Rich and the Fall of Everyone Else (Doubleday Canada), has confirmed her foray into federal politics.But it wasn't long ago that an opposition party similarly looked to press its advantage in a perceived area of weakness for the incumbent government - with little regard for whether it intended to follow through on its assurances. And that didn't exactly work out well for the star candidate involved...
The race to replace MP Bob Rae in the Toronto Centre riding is gaining momentum as the Thomson Reuters editor and managing director has confirmed she will be seeking the Liberal party nomination.
Years after a nondescript public servant wouldn’t play ball with institutional sleaze (and became a national hero in the process), Allan Cutler still has Canada on his mind. He is as troubled now as ever he was when Jean Chretien had his name embossed on golf balls to keep Quebec in Canada....nor for the writer whose criticism was seen to define the problem:
“I had hoped after Gomery that things would change. If anything, it has gotten worse. We have an epidemic of corruption at the federal level. Whistleblowers are even more unwelcome now than they were then.”
Savoie's passionate condemnation of centralization didn't slow it down. In an odd way, it may even have contributed to it.Now, I have no doubt that there are plenty of Libs hastily grabbing copies of Plutocrats for their summer reading. But given that the actual direction of the party under Justin Trudeau has involved backing the Cons and corporate interests at every turn, there's little reason to think Freeland's call to serve "everyone else" is being treated as anything other than a cookbook - nor that the Libs see an expose about the global elite as much besides a manual to gain entrance to the club.
"An adviser to a prime minister asked me if I'd sign a copy of Governing from the Centre," Savoie says. "I leafed through it and I noticed that he had read it, he had underlined a few things. And I said, 'Now you're going to do things differently?' He said, 'No, no, no. We use it as a manual.' "
We'll see whether Freeland herself manages to gain any traction on the Canadian political scene. But all indications now are that she's mostly being used to brand continued plutocratic rule with a large red "L" - and the rest of us shouldn't see that as an improvement.