Make no mistake: the Conservatives' leadership race has dramatically set back their party, perhaps for years to come. Among other things, it has revealed the once-great Conservative Party of Canada to be nasty, brutish and short-sighted. By selecting a winner, the Conservative Party of Canada has rendered itself a loser, and wholly undeserving of power.
As the CPC strategizes for a new party leader, some right-minded pundits of market fundamentalism are touting the inexperienced political outsider as a serious contender for party leader. That imprudent direction may well prove to widen the chasm between the CPC and wiser-than-previously-anticipated average Canadian voters.
Breaking economic and diplomatic ties with Iran has harmed Iranian-Canadians, the Canadian economy and Canada's international standing. Conservative leadership candidates should recognize this fact, and not repeat the same old policies which not only harmed Canada, but also led to their electoral defeat.
The Conservatives' anti-Ignatieff "Just Visiting" campaign was arguably the most effective political ad campaign in modern Canadian history. It is astonishing - it is beyond belief - that the once-great Conservative Party of Canada is now embracing Kevin O'Leary, another Boston resident. Another interloper. Another guy "just visiting."
Should Conservative party members decide that reality TV star Kevin O'Leary is the best choice to carry the party forward, they will have to contend with the party's own past. Attack ads against O'Leary have already been written, and they're quite effective. Problem is, the Conservatives wrote them.
My dad wrote about tax policy, to be sure, but it was in the larger context of how Canada ought to be in fiscal, social and constitutional terms. He was concerned about the expansion of the role of government because it would have to be financed with higher and broader taxes, which he likened to a forced confiscation of property.
Radical populism has shown its ugly face during this leadership race, and that face is the dual-headed hydra of Kellie Leitch and Kevin O'Leary. The concern is that if radical populism in the Conservative Party is left unchecked, it threatens to overtake meaningful and nuanced candidates like Bernier and Chong.
After the success of Donald Trump, multiple candidates are venturing into that version of the imitation game - in tone, in style, in tactics or in substance. Their failure to recognize fundamental differences in the political culture and the leadership selection processes in both countries will be their undoing.