Friday, February 15, 2008

A Shorter L. Ian

Those leadership numbers mean squat. Ignore 'em

A point with which I heartily agree.


Ti-Guy said...

From the Natpost link:

The Conservatives continue to count on Harper's strong advantage over Dion on leadership attributes -- as reflected by polling questions about who would make the best prime minister and who has the best vision for the country.

I still wish someone (with the exception of gushy Harper-bot cheerleaders/paid shills) would attempt to operationalise these two concepts..."leadership" and "vision for the country."

I deal quite a bit with those two issues, and Harper's authoritarianism as leadership is not generally considered that sophisticated or workable for diverse and advanced democracies. And "the vision thing" is completely meaningless. Apart from "North Star," "Energy superpower" and maybe invoking Canada's military record from times long past, what vision for the country has he and his party actually articulated? Or is that all of it?

I suspect the polls don't actually ask what people understand by leadership and vision and indeed, in the real world, most people don't have a clue about what they want a leader to be (except for authoritarian followers, who just want to be told what to do) or what kind of vision they themselves have in mind.

Finally, if we are to accept that Harper is, at heart, a true libertarian, then those two concepts are meaningless. Anarchism and the emergent properties that flow from it would be the only social dynamics that should have any meaning for him.

Gayle said...

"Harper's authoritarianism as leadership is not generally considered that sophisticated or workable for diverse and advanced democracies."

Exactly. Perhaps people are forgetting a good leader is NOT a one man show. A good leader makes sure the place can run without him. Without Harper the CPC would collapse.

Ti-Guy said...

There's a style of leadership that is in fact, a little more interventionist than anything-goes open democracy, that uses the strengths and weaknesses of the group to the advantage of the project.

It's not appropriate for Parliament, but it's a style of leadership that works well in public and private institutions. It works to marginalise or re-direct the forces that are not buying into the overall mission or vision (which has to be articulated before any changes are implemented), and that has to be done in a way that nevertheless respects the substantial rights and personal dignity people have in a liberal democracy. risk creating forces that will undermine you and you will have failed as a leader for precisely that reason, which will be proved by a leader who starts throwing around blame and engaging in peevish whining.

I think Harper's come rather late to understanding all of this. That's what happens when you surround yourself with sycophants for most of your life and have never had to run anything that is expected to accomplish anything useful or meaningful.

Ti-Guy said...

Breaking: Blogging Tory supports forced sterilisation

Anonymous said...
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bigcitylib said...

The spawn of Ezra and Mark, I suppose.

Anonymous said...

Management 101 - a good leader knows how the delegate, knows how to use good people.

Holly Stick said...

A good leader spends less time looking at photos of himself. Stephen Stalin would like to have a personality cult, if he had a personality.

Anonymous said...


note to self, come back in a few weeks (following the impending election in which Harper squashes Dion like a grape) and watch with glee the feverish efforts to rebuild the cocoon.

frances said...

The latest Ipsos-Reid poll which came out today has the Libs at 29%, trailing the Tories who are at 36%.

Dion's all over the map on whether he wants to pull the plug. His two opposition colleagues do. Harper doesn't.

Only Dion is undecided. Sound familiar?

Paul Wells is shaking his head about it on his blog.

Ti-Guy said...

Whenever Frances sees the liberals/progressives making good arguments, he-she brings out the latest Ipsos-Reid poll, that always shows the Conservatives at eleventy-billion percent.

Surely Frances, even you are not so insensate as to not realise the intellectual bankruptcy of such a dodge, are you?

Standards, dear, standards. That's all the rest of us expect from Conservatives.

Reality Bites said...

Anyone think L. Ian also may not want an election campaign in which Mulroney will be an issue?

frances said...

The Liberals cannot win an election with Dion at the helm. Full stop.

Ti-guy,Gayle,Reality Bites: learn how to pick leaders instead of weenies like Paul Martin, Jr. and Stephane Dion. Then you'll be in the game, until then don't expect us to be too concerned about the once mighty Liberal party.

Iggy, Rae are two possibilities. McKenna perhaps.

The only thing the Conservatives are gauging is the size and the extent of the victory, the numbers just don't point to any kind of Liberal win. Eat your hearts out!