Some Thoughts by one of the few Great Canadian Prime Ministers.
When we see the mediocrity of most Canadian federal and provincial politicians, and when the see the federal government, the (supposed) protector of our human rights, being eviscerated by people who put their own petty provincial fiefdoms ahead of the country as a whole, we should remember this great man whose visions for Canada have only been equalled by Lester B. Pearson, Wilfrid Laurier and John A. Macdonald (despite his alcoholism, bigotry, and corruption).
"A country, after all, is not something you build as the pharaohs built the pyramids, and leave standing there to defy eternity. A country is something that is built every day out of certain basic shared values. And so it is in the hands of every Canadian to determine how well and wisely we shall build the country of the future."
"Who speaks for Canada? Our strength lies in our national will to live and work together as a people. Weaken that will, that spirit of community, and you weaken Canada. Weaken Canada, and you damage all the parts, no matter how rich some of those parts may be. My friends, you and I must stand up for Canada, and we must see that there is a national government that has the courage to do so as well."
"What a magician this Mr. [Brian] Mulroney is, and what a sly fox! ... In a single master stroke, this clever negotiator has thus managed to approve the call for Special Status (Jean Lesage and Claude Ryan), the call for Two Nations (Robert Stanfield), the call for a Canadian Board of Directors made up of 11 first ministers (Allan Blakeney and Marcel Faribeault), and the call for a Community of Communities (Joe Clark). He has not quite succeeded in achieving sovereignty-association, but he has put Canada on the fast track for getting there."
(Quotations from the 1980's debate around the Mulroney attempt to dismember Canada with the Meech Lake Accord)
In a newspaper column Trudeau also wrote: "The federation was set to last a thousand years. Alas, only one eventuality hadn't been foreseen: that one day the government of Canada would fall into the hands of a weakling. It has now happened." He was speaking of Mulroney, of course, but this can be applied equally to Harper, who apart from his insatiable hunger for personal power at the highest level, has no vision for Canada as a country or for protecting it from provincial rapacity.