No, Kelly McParland doesn't mean the grits should be neutered. He suggests that before iffy fixes Canada , there is something far more fundamental for the rudderless deluded grits to do.
What the party should have been doing was looking at itself. If they wanted to hear the truth, Liberals should have imported a collection of respectable outsiders able and willing to explain in unblinkered detail just how bankrupt and deluded the Liberal party has become with regard to its own identity. Liberals cling to fanciful notions about their own worthiness, and the one-time greatness of the party, that prevent the current edition from making the kind of decisions that might .... might ... lift it out of its rut.
Today’s Liberals think they're heirs to a national powerhouse. They mistake their long run in office from the mid-1960s as proof of the greatness of their own history. It’s true they formed the government for most of that period, but not because of any inherent worthiness. A Liberal leader hasn’t defeated a strong opponent since 1974, when Pierre Trudeau toured the country deriding Robert Stanfield’s plan to freeze wages and prices -- sneering “Zap, you’re frozen” -- and then introduced an identical policy once safely re-elected.
Since then, what’s the Liberal record? A series of victories over weak opponents and divided parties. Trudeau beat Joe Clark after Clark forgot to count his MPs. Gee, big accomplishment. Jean Chretien gained power after nine years of Brian Mulroney left the country eager for a change -- any change. Chretien’s two ensuing majorities -- held up by Liberals (and Chretien) as evidence of his cunning -- resulted from the Conservatives fracturing into many little pieces, dividing their support for a decade until Stephen Harper came along to re-unite it under one banner.