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February 28, 2019 | All Ears

A best-selling Canadian author of 14 books on economic trends, real estate, the financial crisis, personal finance strategies, taxation and politics. Nationally-known speaker and lecturer on macroeconomics, the housing market and investment techniques. He is a licensed Investment Advisor with a fee-based, no-commission Toronto-based practice serving clients across Canada.

Whadda week. This blog would like to deviate from the usual financial and housing swill to wade into the political slop. After all, it’s an election year in Canada (and Alberta) and already Americans are obsessing over the 2020 presidential contest. The news has been thick in the last few days. What has happened since Monday could keep resonating for months. Years, maybe. Hope you were listening.

On the byelections:
Jagmeet got his seat, but given the fact he’s a party leader and the NPD did everything but give free tummy rubs in Burnaby South, it was a lousy result. Six in ten voters rejected him. One in ten chose the God-talks-to-me Mad Max moppet. And 70% of people stayed home. Maybe there’s a case to be made for compulsory voting. In Toronto the Cons had a strong win and the PPC crashed & burned. In Montreal it was a Libfest as the T2 gang took a riding the Dippers had held for over a decade. Without a whimper.

Conclusion: The NDP will be crushed in Quebec and Singh will be running in his first and last federal campaign. The Libs will benefit from the Dipper disaster, but lose seats in Ford’s Ontario. Max is already toast. BC is nuts.

On Jody:
Putting non-politicians in government is dangerous. Since it takes time to learn effective lying and be totally indoctrinated into a party, leaders who promote newbies take on tons of risk. Because JWR was a woman, indigenous, a skilled lawyer and from the West she was catapulted into cabinet. The PMO’s cronies thought they could muscle her just like everyone else but, alas, JWR was a problem. She had ethics.

Her testimony to the justice committee was historic. Cabinet and caucus confidentiality was broken. The PMO was decimated. The prime minister was implicated in an orchestrated attempt to thwart due legal process and protect a corporation (which, by the way, spent $30,000 on hookers for Muammar Gaddafi’s debauched kid). If you thought Justin Trudeau represented something new, fresh, egalitarian, progressive and clean in public life, you were shocked. If you’d had your ass handed to you by a PM afraid of democracy and now run a pathetic blog, well, not so much.

Does the JWR-Lavalin thing have legs enough to defeat T2? Unknown. That’s up to the oppo guys to keep the story alive and explain how power corrupts.

On Cohen:
How could you not like a convicted felon on his way to prison in a nice suit who spoke well and didn’t get fussed when repeatedly called a piece of crap by legislators on national TV? Whether Trump’s former lawyer was credible or not is immaterial. He tabled documents that seemingly prove illegal or unethical acts. There will be consequences.

Meanwhile the Republican strategy of going all ad hominem didn’t work. It belied fear and desperation. More importantly, it made viewers wonder why they didn’t refute what the disgraced lawyer had to say, instead of trashing him. It’s human nature. People gravitate to the underdog. They identify. Especially when there is grace under fire. Cohen won.

On Kim:
The Hanoi Summit failed for America and was another massive win for the porcine dictator of North Korea. There was no agreement because no pre-summit talks had framed one. There’s a reason leaders don’t do this kind of thing – it doesn’t work. Only an egomaniac like the current US president would think his personal charm, charisma and glow could alter international relations, turn rockets into ploughshares and score him a Nobel.

Kim was never going to bomb the US, since that would mean instant death. His. North Korea gave up nothing in this charade other than halting some tests. In return for nothing, the little strongman received more than ever dreamed of. He got to stand with the US leader as an equal, to share a stage with his flag and the stars-and-strips on display, to become a demigod in his homeland and to relish the leader of the free world begging him for concessions after flying for an entire day to be his supplicant. Twice.

Yes. A week to remember. But no contest for the year to come. I guess we should talk about how to get ready.

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February 28th, 2019

Posted In: The Greater Fool

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