...it was our dewy-fresh prime minister’s turn to address this esteemed body and, either out of vanity or innocence, he didn’t turn down the invitation. As to the substance of his effusion, one would need an intellectual Geiger counter to find any. The speech was described by the National Post’s John Ivison as “thin as soup made from the carcass of a starving pigeon.” And that’s being generous.
The address easily could have been passed off as a high-school valedictorian speech: it was trite, without being testy, and full of false equivalencies. It bore the now-ineluctable stamp of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s compulsion to hymn, yet again, the all-ranging virtues of diversity.
This word “diversity” has something of a clamp on Trudeau’s brain. He seems to think that merely to pronounce it out loud is to add to the sum of human insight, that its four flat syllables compress all the wisdom of the Sermon on the Mount, Abraham Lincoln’s second inaugural address and the best of Norman Vincent Peale into one handy little word. Yet fluffing a pillow in front of the UN delegates would have had more of an impact.
It’s a pity that, even in that forlorn venue, Trudeau was unwilling to let go of that rhetorical Linus blanket and say a few things about what is really going on in the world. He could have offered some meaningful analysis on the situation in Syria. He could have uttered some truths to those who rarely hear them. Instead, it was the usual mush about “modest Canada” and how we’re back and ready to help.
It really is time to stop bragging about how modest we are, as one cannot honestly brag about being modest...