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Trudeau is gone. The damage he did will live on forever -- unless we fix it Print E-mail
Written by Link Byfield   
Monday, 17 April 2006

This past week our national iconographers have been busy trying to repair more damaging evidence about their patron saint, Pierre Trudeau.

Sensible people, especially in Alberta, have known all along that poor, silly Pierre was a humbug. He was a head-case, not a hero.

Now two friendly biographers, Max and Monique Nemni, tell us our champion of national unity started his political life plotting a violent revolution to establish Quebec as a right-wing dictatorship like those of Spain, Portugal and France.

This was youthful misjudgment, we’re assured -- quite out of character, and unrelated to his brilliant achievements as Canada’s fifteenth prime minister.

Nonsense. It fits with everything else we know about Pierre Trudeau.

We learned decades ago that when our boys were over there getting blown to bits in Europe to stop Hitler, Trudeau was roaring around Montreal on a motorcycle wearing a German army helmet.

What a rebel! say his legions of fans. What style!

No, he was a spoiled rich kid in his early twenties who should have been fighting for his country.

Now it turns out he was actively plotting violent sedition.

Quebec spawned several large pro-Hitler, anti-Jewish fascist groups in the Depression. The worst (including Trudeau’s, apparently) were suppressed when Canada declared war in 1939.

Apologists like Marc Lalonde are now saying that Trudeau just got caught up in the intellectual temper of those times.

Which is precisely the point.

From his German helmet days to his childish “north-south dialogue” in 1983, Trudeau was always just getting caught up in things. In fact he changed ideas and philosophies like clothing styles.

Consistency lay in his personality, not his beliefs. He was the perennial rebel, egotist and show-off, and always fascinated by totalitarian power.

That’s why he was a fascist when Canada joined the free world war against fascism.

That’s why when the West later began a long, fearful war of nerves and resolve against communist China and the Soviet Union, Trudeau was mysteriously slipping through the Iron Curtain to tour both those countries, and coming home to sing their praises.

That’s why, when two people were kidnapped in Quebec by a gang of fanatics well known to the police, Trudeau invoked the War Measures Act, suspended civil liberties across the country, and threw 450 innocent political opponents into jail without warrant.

That’s why he so loved hobnobbing with Fidel Castro, Mao and others whose hands were stained crimson with innocent blood. He admired such monsters, and often said so.

But worst was the damage he did to our constitution. He did more to centralize power in his own office than any leader before or since.

He did more to entrench socialist assumptions like Equalization.

He did more to weaken our elected institutions, weaken traditional rights and freedoms, and Americanize our legal system.

And all of this damage is permanent unless we undo it.

That’s why the Citizens Centre is organizing a major grassroots assembly in Calgary this September 29 to October 1. It’s to identify and proclaim the basic principles Canada needs to get back on track constitutionally.

Now that Stephen Harper is prime minister he is going to reopen the matter of constitutional reform. He has said so, and he means it.

It’s essential that for once we be a jump ahead, knowing what we want and not merely what we don’t like.

Consider attending this assembly. For details, check out

- Link Byfield

Link Byfield is chairman of the Edmonton-based Citizens Centre for Freedom and Democracy, and an Alberta senator-elect.
"Just Between Us" is a feature service of the Citizens Centre for Freedom and Democracy. The purpose of the Citizens Centre is to enhance freedom and democracy by enabling ordinary citizens to become active and effective on important issues outside the normal processes of party politics.

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