Yikes... those aren't my words, they're from Steve Valeriote, who runs the Liberal blog "Far and Wide".
In his rant against former Liberal heavyweight Warren Kinsella, he says some pretty enlightening things in regards to the current state within the Liberal campaign:
If the Dion team has an air of paranoia, lacking trust and outreach, can you really blame them, or does the blame lie with the posturing of others? Ignatieff and Rae have NEVER stopped running for the job, and despite the public face, EVERYONE, including Mr. Kinsella knows darn well that the positioning continues to this day. Has Dion isolated himself, or has his team merely reacted to life within a wolves den, where loyalties are divided, where nothing occurs on its own, it's all part of a greater scheme?
Yikes. The Liberal Party is "a wolves den" for Mr. Dion? Not so happy a party I see, as we've been led to believe. But we're starting to see the shiny verneer coming off the Liberal Party as a whole from just about every corner right now, as it's already decending into name-calling, and blame placing arguments in the mainstream media, and via the bloggers online. Things are also falling apart at various events for the Liberals, with supporters even starting to get into arguments with the media when they start asking tough questions.
There haven't been any "wheels falling off" moments for their campaign... you see, you have to have air in the tires first, and then get things rolling before the wheels even have the opportunity to fall off.
Since I can't do it justice with my commentary, I'm just going to repost his post in full... but do be advised, HE DOES USE SOME NON-CC APPROVED LANGUAGE, which I've "blanked" out to avoid any filters. It's a pretty eye opening post to the frustrations that are currently being vented within the ranks of the Liberal Party of Canada.
Far and Wide - Saturday, September 27, 2008
The guy who seems content to tear down on a continual basis, who can't seem to get over a very juvenile bitterness, has the audacity to accuse others of destroying what he and others "built". Warren Kinsella is obviously a shrewd man, with great political instincts, but frankly his inability to GET OVER HIMSELF is beyond tiresome. I confess to not reading Kinsella's popular blog much, but I catch certain things from others, and today I did read the post highlighted on NNW. Kinsella:
It's sad, too. Stéphane Dion and his team didn't reach out to very many experienced Grits, so many, many folks are watching the carrnage from the sidelines. But I have to say, it's sad to see what we built up get pi***d away.
Why don't you cut through the b******t Warren, because I suspect you understand the dynamics. I didn't support Dion for the leadership, truth be told he was my fourth choice, because I saw massive baggage, not easily dismissed. That said, Dion won the leadership, and it was accomplished without many of the big backroom boys blessing. If the Dion team has an air of paranoia, lacking trust and outreach, can you really blame them, or does the blame lie with the posturing of others? Ignatieff and Rae have NEVER stopped running for the job, and despite the public face, EVERYONE, including Mr. Kinsella knows darn well that the positioning continues to this day. Has Dion isolated himself, or has his team merely reacted to life within a wolves den, where loyalties are divided, where nothing occurs on its own, it's all part of a greater scheme?
You put faith in people you trust, and every campaign relies on sources who's advice is pure and isn't conflicted. If there is a hint of doubt, or if things have been said or moves noticed that cause some to question loyalty, then do you blame the team for exhibiting a seige mentality? Dion has always been an outsider with the Liberal elites, who long ago decided which two people they would back, and Warren knows well how the old camps divided in the last leadership. Did that just evaporate after Dion won, or did people begin to think about the next time? Maybe people shouldn't be on the sidelines, we are clearly stronger with everyone together, but that is a false presentation, because during Kinsella's reign many others were on the sidelines, during the subsequent reign of the "other" side, the same occurred. Teams within the team, almost hilarious to hear Kinsella cry foul now, when he thrived in that environment.
Guess what Warren? You had the benefit of a DIVIDED right, the Liberals winning within that environment about as impressive as Ralph Klein's ability to balance the budget in Alberta. In other words, it was a perfect storm, which made strategy much more elemental and simplistic. Seems to me that the current problems started during the Kinsella reign, or did Dion lose 90 000 Quebec Liberal members since 2006? That doesn't give Dion a pass on Quebec, I personally think our strategy since he took the helm has bordered on disgrace, but the erosion of the grassroots started under Chretien's watch and that is an objective fact, if Dion has failed, it's because he can't get us off the mat, a bottom he inherited.
The silliest part of the argument, if any of Dion's people actually read what Kinsella writes, they would have to be categorically insane to welcome him into the inner circle. Clearly, he lacks the most basic of requirements, the ability to put old scores on hold, the sense that any contribution is without ulterior agendas. I heard him on CBC this morning, he called himself a Liberal, but other than the declaration I frankly see no substantive evidence to support that, unless of course subjecting YL's to horrible music will bring us back to the promised land.
What was "built" might have brought electoral success, within favorable conditions, but it didn't "build" the Liberal Party from within, it relied on divisions and sides, fat cats with big wallets and self important elites with ambition. The Liberal Party became a tactical entity, and that's marvelous, but it lost it's soul along the way, prior to Dion, reaching a crescendo of pandering nothingness. I don't consider a characterization as the Canadian Karl Rove complimentary, as a matter of fact I'd be embarrassed.
If Dion is isolated, it's because the Liberal Party is such a cluster f**k of competing self interests, factions and bruised egos, it's better to adopt a bunker mentality. Kinsella chastises Dion, but really Dion is just reacting to the reality of the Liberal Party of Canada, as others have done before. And, the next time Warren is chatting with his old "experienced" Grits off the record, when the conversation turns to the post-Dion Liberal Party, he will have his answer.
posted by Steve V at 3:58 PM
UPDATE: Danielle's post over at "Galloping Around the Golden Horseshoe" also is a telling story on the current state of the Liberal disarray... they're so desperate, they're doing everything they can to try and stem the bleeding they're seeing from the Liberal Party to the NDP. They're already hitting rock bottom, and instead of offering Canadians a reason to vote for them, they're pulling out the "Only we can stop Harper!" card. Please.
Angus-Reid today, amazingly, shows the Liberals and the NDP TIED nationally at 21%. If these trends hold, the Liberal look to take a major beating at the polls this October. Have you ever stopped to consider, Danielle, that Canadians are sick and tired of hearing the same old fear tactics from you guys? "But, but, but, Harper's REALLY scary!!!"
News flash... Canadians have been watching him for two and a half years, and they simply don't buy that line anymore. You see, we, the Canadian public, are a lot smarter than you Liberals give us credit for.