You won’t read this in the Paul Wells’ Stephane Dion Love-In Blog.
All politicians need to ensure that they are not overly offensive in their public statements (or the statements of their spouses). It’s not a good idea to offend specific groups of people for no real reason.
This, of course, is a lesson that Stephane Dion has yet to learn. The following is a passage from a Montreal Gazette article called “Stephane Dion, Unmasked” last week:
Soon, though, Dion and Krieber’s [his wife] Paris adventure was over and the couple had a comedown: both got jobs as teaching assistants at the Universite de Moncton in New Brunswick. “It was our reality check,” Krieber recalled. On his website, Dion called Moncton “a shock” – students who didn’t know Marx from Max Weber, or who thought Machiavelli was Scottish. After one semester, the couple moved to Montreal.
And the inevitable defender of ‘Moncton’ in a letter to the editor called “Don’t Insult Moncton”:
If Stephane Dion’s objective is federalism and a united Canada he should lose the arrogant and pseudo-intellectual comments about the level of erudition in Moncton. I’m not even from there and I was offended by it.
There are far greater virtues than the intellect. How come those who can afford higher education in foreign countries are exactly the same people who get to decide how important knowing Marx from Machiavelli is? It is pretentious, bombastic nonsense to think that is more important than knowing how to fish. That said, rest assured there are people in New Brunswick and probably even Moncton who are far smarter than Dion and his bourgeois wife.
Personally, I think she owes New Brunswick an apology. You lost huge points with the left-leaning Liberals there, at least with this one. As one political veteran told me when I was a card-carrying Liberal and working campaigns: “Win them one at a time.” The inverse is also true: “Lose them one at a time.”
Now, Ms. Boucher has a point. There are about 250,000 Acadians (more or less) in New Brunswick and other slew in the other Maritime provinces. A drive by smear of the Acadians in this way – particularly when the level of university educated Acadians has rocketed in the past 30 years, is not an overly good political strategy.
Maybe that’s Dion’s ultimate strategy. Piss off all French speaking Canadians.
That comment was on his web site? Doesn’t he have a Web site editor? Don’t these things set off red flags for a guy who wants to be PM?
Being a guy of statistics, I was curious, as are you:
Moncton: % of Francophone population with a university degree (17%)
Montreal: % of population with a university degree (17.7%)
Moncton: % of Francophone population with some post secondary education (57%)
Montreal: % of population with a university degree (55.6%)
Oh gosh! Those stupid Moncton Francophones are at least as educated as Montrealers. Fie, for shame!
Maybe Dion should move to Moncton to hang around some educated people for a change.