Former Green Party leader Jim Harris says meeting first Green MP will be “like being in Berlin the day the Berlin Wall fell” and “like being in South Africa when Nelson Mandela was liberated from jail… .”

by matttbastard

Former Green Party leader Jim Harris can barely contain himself:

Today is a day of days. It’s the first day of a new era. It’s a day that you don’t want to miss. Come to Guelph today. There are tectonic forces at work in Canadian politics.

I imagine it’s like being in Berlin the day the Berlin Wall fell. It’s like being in South Africa when Nelson Mandela was liberated from jail — or the day he was inaugurated as President. Imagine being in Berlin or South Africa while history was shifting . . .

We are in such a moment. Funny thing is not everyone sees or feels the moment in terms of how profound it is until later — when history books are written. Carpe Diem! Seize the day — today is the day we all get to be part of history. It’s the day we’ll tell our grandchildren about — I was there when . . .

Meet Canada’s first Green MP in Guelph today (Sunday, August 31)! Blair Wilson, the former independent MP who is now the Green Party’s first MP in Parliament, comes to Guelph with Elizabeth May to support Mike Nagy’s campaign.

To quote Johnny Rotten, “ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?” After a rousing buildup like that, I was expecting a bigger pay off than “meet Blair Wilson!” If the superfluity of parody was ever in doubt…

h/t Partisan Non-partisan

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8 thoughts on “Former Green Party leader Jim Harris says meeting first Green MP will be “like being in Berlin the day the Berlin Wall fell” and “like being in South Africa when Nelson Mandela was liberated from jail… .”

  1. You have to understand that the Greens have been howling mad for years now at their non-inclusion in the national debates, and many firmly believe in their secret hearts that if not for that slight, they’d be serving as the official opposition or better by now.

    They see Wilson as their ticket. No longer can they be refused access to the halls of power that the debates will bring them. No longer can ‘the man’ of the media consortiom and the status quo hold them down, no, for now they have “the seat” that the consortium has demanded.

    Except that they’re wrong.

    They’re wrong in thinking a single MP will get them in, because the TV networks don’t run the debates out of an interest in political fairness, they run it in an interest of getting viewers. Having five candidates up on stage all trying to debate at the same time? It’ll be a farce. The networks know this, and so do we when we think about it.

    So instead the consortium will simply say “Look, we’re going with the same criteria we did last year. The four most prominent parties with representation in the House. Currently you have as much representation as Arthur Andre, Bill Casey, and Louise Thibault, and we’re not giving them a place either.”

    It’s a shame, because I actually wouldn’t mind seeing the Greens in debate, partially because I don’t mind some of their policies (though I preferred them under Jim Harris) and partially because I think it might be illuminating to actually see if May fares as poorly as I think she would against the other leaders. Face it, regardless of how skilled the lady is, she has the telegenic appeal of a strident chipmunk. Looking goofy is not a good selling feature in national debates.


  2. Whooee! Seems like Matt is as obsessed about Wilson as anyone. Four blog posts on one topic in less than 24 hours.

    Today, I posted my first piece on the issue. Maybe I’ll find time to post a few more and try to catch up with you, Matt. ;-)

    Today, I did something I should have done yesterday. I looked into news reports from October 2007 when Wilson and the Liberals parted ways. Turns out he wasn’t “turfed” as the original (now corrected) CP story said. He resigned. At the time, Dion and other Liberal MPs praised him for voluntarily stepping aside while he was under investigation by Elections Canada.

    Much has been made of a multi-million dollar lawsuit brought against Wilson by his wife’s stepfather. Little has been made of the fact that the suit was reduced to an $11,000 dispute. The Mtl Gazette is reporting that Wilson is now suing the stepfather for sullying his reputation.

    Whether or not the old boys in suits that dictate the terms of the televised debates will allow Elizabeth May into the highest profile and most important event of modern Canadian elections is, as A Non says, not a certainty. They seem to have no problem allowing a separatist leader of a regional party that runs in only 70-odd ridings a seat at the debate. In 9 of 10 provinces, voters cannot vote BQ, even if they wanted to.

    In 2006, 650,000 Canadians voted for the Green Party. Elections Canada hands out almost $1 million in taxpayers’ money per year to the Green Party. All Canadians deserve to see the leader of the Greens debating against the gang of four men in suits.

    As far as Elizabeth’s telegenic qualities go, I’d like to think Canadians are less like John McCain than A Non’s comment suggests. She may be a little nerdy or geeky and maybe she ain’t a knockout like Julie Couillard. I’ve met Elizabeth in person a couple times and I’ve seen her speak in person several times. She is a warm, genuine human being — dedicated and intelligent. I refer to her as “the gal I adore” but I ain’t plannin’ on jumpin’ in the sack with her. Her looks are just fine with me. It’s her qualifications that matter and she’s got plenty.



  3. Now there’s a selling point: “Blair Wilson: he’s not as corrupt as you think”.

    Incidently, my original post on the matter noted that Wilson (claims to have) willingly left the Grits and had been more-or-less exonerated by Elections Canada; regardless, he’s still damaged goods, and I firmly believe May and the Green Party leadership made a foolish decision that may boomerang once the writ is dropped. I mean, a floor crossing is one thing; an independent pick up yet another. But a guy who suddenly discovered his environmental consciousness and zeal for democratic reform only after he was given the shaft by his former party because it felt the corruption charges made him too hot to handle is like a big ol’ political piñata just waiting to be knocked about by the kids at the party.

    So enjoy the moment; I won’t be surprised if Wilson’s Parliamentary career doesn’t survive the election.


  4. (BTW, shouldn’t you be en route for your date with history by now? Harris advised folks to get into Guelph early, no doubt to beat the throngs of jubilant well-wishers. ;-))


  5. BTW, shouldn’t you be en route for your date with history by now?

    I don’t own a car. I seldom travel unnecessarily. I do my best to live the way I vote – green and Green. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I have some granola that needs munchin’.



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