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ANDERSON: Massacre in the House, or much ado about not much at all?

Image Credit: Contributed by author
May 24, 2016 - 7:13 AM

The Conservative version: Justin "Nails" Trudeau, a crumpled cigarette dangling out of one side of his mouth and the "F" word slurring out of the other, reeled drunkenly over to the opposition speaker and punched him in the head and then, in a fit of misogynistic bullying, attacked a woman's breast with a vicious Northern Shaolin elbow strike. But for the speaker's intervention, who knows what further violence and trauma this criminal might have inflicted?

The NDP version: Justin "Attila" Trudeau seized a rusty sword and took the opposition benches by storm, hurling obscenities and administering unwanted mastectomies while female MPs cowered in corners or fled for the exits. Sir Mulcair of the House of Gender Equity beat back the foul lout, but in the gory aftermath his womenfolk now feel "unsafe" and worry about future Prime Ministerial assaults on their persons and privates.

The Liberal version: Justin "Sunny Face" Trudeau strolled helpfully across the floor to offer his assistance to a fellow MP who was trying to escape the clutches of a nefarious gaggle of NDP fiends, accidentally brushing the breast of one of them in a wholly unsexual and rather kindly manner. Whereupon in true Canadian style he donned sackcloth, covered himself in ashes, and apologized to the Speaker, the opposition, the gallery, the breast, the Sikhs, all Canadians, and anything else that twitched. Twice.

The Fourth Estate Version: Outside of the House the media had a heyday, variously opining that Trudeau's escapades represented everything from an assault on all women everywhere to an assault on our very system of self-government. Only after the fuss died down a bit did some journalists rather shamefacedly acknowledge that the entire incident, while somewhat disturbing, was a bit of a tempest in a teapot. Presumably the loud and politically-inspired "outrage" in opposition benches will eventually peter out too.

Back in the real world, it's impossible to say what moved the Prime Minister to leap out of his chair and mince across the floor to grab the Opposition Whip, serenading the chamber with pottymouth and inadvertently disturbing the naughty bits of a female MP.

If I had the slightest suspicion that he had the intellectual wherewithal to plan such a move I would be tempted to think it began as an intentional PR move that went horribly wrong. After all, his father's inclination to "fuddle duddle" and give one finger salutes out west generated a certain mystique back east, and Chretien's manhandling moments didn't hurt him politically either. Who's not up for a bit of manly donnybrooking in the political arena after hockey season is over? Indeed, my good friend Darrel Stinson cemented his political career by challenging an NDP MP to a fistfight and backing him down in a hallway of Centre Block. If physical showboating was JT's intent, it didn't work. It all went sideways in a big way once female breasts entered the fray.

But I don't think that was his intent at all. I think it was unrehearsed and spontaneous. I think he had a temper tantrum of the sort indulged in by small children, overgrown adolescents, and hereditary princelings. Henry II, for example, made quite a habit of rolling on the floor gnawing sticks and straw in fits of spleen, and John of Magna Carta fame continued the family tradition whenever he found himself stymied. Of course in their defence they were born into office some 800 years ago and had no real reason to behave differently at a time when the term "Parliament" referred to other hereditary advisors who served at the King's pleasure and could be dismissed at his will.

One might expect that many hundreds of years later seasoned politicians who supposedly earn their way instead of being born into royalty would have learned to comport themselves like adults inside the Chamber by the time they achieve high office, but for those of us who see JT as a foppish and frivolous spoiled brat whose penchant for self adoration is exceeded only by his lack of intellect, this and future bouts of childish petulance (and there will be more) come as no surprise at all. When he turns out to be a dictatorial autocrat of the kind Harper was regularly and falsely accused of being, it will not be because he has a political agenda but because he's a spoilt man-child who has none of the maturation that adversity brings, and became First Minister only by dint of his locks and his father's name.

It's too late for early childhood discipline I suppose, but a late adolescent spanking might be helpful. Perhaps the next person the princeling lays his well manicured hands on will oblige.

— Scott Anderson is a Vernon City Councillor, freelance writer, and a bunch of other stuff. His academic background is in International Relations, Strategic Studies, Philosophy, and poking progressives with rhetorical sticks until they explode.

News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2016
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