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Lessons Trudeau should keep in mind for his second term

Sabrina Almeida

As Justin Trudeau prepares for his second term as prime minister, hopefully he will have a strategic plan to remedy the mess made in the past four years. That is provided his minority government lasts beyond a few months.

If the October 21 elections were to be considered his report card, Trudeau should understand that most Canadians didn’t want him back. Were it not for a Conservative-shy Ontario he might have been a one-term prime minister demoted to opposition leader. And this could still happen!

We’ve all heard how a PM has never gone after a premier in such a big way in a federal election. What’s more it may seem like it paid off. Faced with cuts to education and healthcare (some of which were later rolled back) many Ontarians feared the worst with Scheer at the centre. So, they decided to opt for a big spender again.

Ironically, while we are consumed with the environmental issues our descendants will inherit, little thought has been given to the national debt that threatens to crush them. We’ll take the free stuff and concessions especially if we are not paying for it!

Truth be told, despite Doug Ford staying out of the limelight during the federal campaign period the damage was already done. Ontario gave our irresponsible and entitled prime minister a second chance, mostly out of fear. But in doing so, we have separated ourselves from reality and him from the rest of the country.

Trudeau now shepherds a deeply divided Canada. Not only have the autonomists in Quebec grown stronger, but disillusioned Albertans without representation in Ottawa are calling for a western separation as well… with others in Saskatchewan adding volume to the Wexit voice.

In a recent interview Kevin O’Leary chairman of O’Shares ETFs and star of the hit show Shark Tank puts the disaster down to Trudeau’s lack of vision and leadership skills. “What is the definition of leadership if it isn’t to unite a country? Here’s a guy that’s so poor in executional skills, in strategic skills, in any kind of vision and leadership, and if I may be critical, he has destroyed unity in Canada because he doesn’t know what it means,” O’Leary told Kitco News.

He then went on to list out the numerous economic and diplomatic missteps—right from Trudeau’s mishandling of the energy sector and pipeline to our issues with China, Saudi Arabia and to a lesser extent India. Elaborating on the reasons for these bungled opportunities, O’Leary points the finger at cabinet ministers saying Trudeau simply chose the wrong people for the job. As a result, O’Leary and a number of other economists predict that the country is headed towards a recession. With half of Canadians $200 away from insolvency, this hardly bodes well for the economy.

A smart Trudeau would realize that his second term is unlikely to be a cakewalk. The nation is deeply split along regional lines and he must find ‘sustainable’ ways to bridge the gaps. The Saskatchewan premier has already expressed his disappointment with the first meeting. Hardly a good way to start.

Trudeau must keep his promise to fight climate change while expanding the Trans Mountain pipeline in the west so that oil-rich Alberta can sell its product abroad and prosper.

He must repair relations with China, India and Saudi Arabia to increase our export opportunities while crawling out of the shadow and clutches of our southern neighbours. And reducing our dependence on them. It’s time to realize they don’t have our best interests at heart. Look at the price we paid for the Huawei issue.

What he shouldn’t do is grant concessions to rival parties to stay in power. NDP leader Jagmeet Singh is already threatening to pull the rug if his objectives (like universal pharmacare for example) aren’t met.

The federal liberals will thus have to walk a slippery slope and govern one issue and one day at a time. It will take real collaboration and co-operation between parties and regions to unite the country, grow the economy and establish Canada’s presence on the world stage.

So, Mr. Trudeau let’s see what you are really made of. Don’t squander this second chance like you have done our financial stability! -CINEWS


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