Memo to John Tory: Unleash the asshole within
I recently got turned on to a blog called Ottawa Watch and found this enjoyable little post about the “asshole factor” in politics. It mentions just about everyone except John Tory, who, judging by my discussions with him and every public display of behaviour, is a really nice guy. Maybe that’s the problem.
Mark Bourrie runs down the list in his blog:
Dalton McGuinty? Asshole. …Dalton replaced Ernie Eves (bad name, social-climbing asshole) who replaced Mike Harris (mean-assed asshole) who replaced Bob Rae (unprincipled asshole) who replaced David Peterson (not quite a complete asshole) who replaced Frank Miller (used-car salesman hick asshole) who replaced Bill Davis (manipulative small-town Rotarian asshole).
What Bourrie fails to mention is that “assholeability” is actually an important and necessary trait for politicians. One of the things people look for in a leader is the willingness to piss off the right people by telling them where they can stick it. And we judge our leaders partly by which groups they are happily willing to alienate—including, and perhaps especially, the people within the party that a leader is willing to quash mercilessly (for instance, when Chrétien left traditional-marriage Liberals out in the cold). Tory won’t utter a mean word about anyone in the snakepit that is the Ontario PC Party, and it’s hard to unite behind a leader who’s not willing to show people who’s boss.