- Chris Selley nicely summarizes Jack Layton's celebration of life today:
I can just hear people kvetching: Was this a funeral for a great man, or a rally for his party?- Meanwhile, Stephen Lewis' stirring eulogy is here.
But again, this is surely to miss the point. Mr. Lewis said, son Mike and daughter Sarah confirmed in a lovely joint eulogy, and no one has plausibly disproved the concept, that for Jack Layton, “the private man and the public man were synonymous.” And that man was a New Democrat — for 40 years. He took his colleagues to unimagined new heights, rightly feared a tumble, and attempted to rally their spirits with his final words. We rightly lament the dearth of authenticity and sincerity in our politicians. Here was one displaying both in the most trying circumstances imaginable, and some of us turned up our noses.
Frankly, it’s easy to imagine many of the complainers mourning Layton’s conservative equivalent just as passionately as Canadians mourned Layton — if only it was possible to imagine a conservative equivalent of Jack Layton. I only met Layton once, in his final and finest office on Parliament Hill. Judging by the stories and anecdotes I saw this week, in print and in voice and in chalk, two million or so Canadians knew him better, and believed he was genuinely interested in their lives — “a man of the people who made everyone feel special,” as Shawn Atleo said. Love him or hate him, this is pretty much what politics is supposed to be.
- The Leader-Post editorial board slams the crowded jails resulting from the Cons' dumb on crime policies, while Chris Putnam criticizes a similarly short-sighted publicity stunt on a smaller scale in the form of the Canadian Taxpayers Federation's attacks on video games in youth facilities.
- Finally, Errol Black and Jim Silver serve up some fast facts as to who's pushing for perpetually-increasing inequality and why.