That weren't no DJ, that was hazy cosmic jive

Legacy of kitsch

When Jean Chrétien was asked last week what he thought of a Liberal-NDP full-blown party merger, he now-famously replied “If it’s doable, let’s do it.”

Lots of ink has been spilled as to how and why the former PM could be so seemingly cavalier about the prospect of dissolving his party fully into an elephantine Canadian version of the Liberal Democrats. Maybe it’s his frustration with Ignatieff’s lacklustre leadership. Maybe it’s his realisation that the Liberal Decade of the 1990s, under his watch, was so secure mainly because the Bloc had emerged to swallow Québec anti-federalist votes, and the right-wing was not only split, but still genuinely loathed.

I happen to wonder whether Chrétien was just trying to deflect attention away from his official portrait, unveiled last week. The Little Guy always had been quite brazenly concerned about the kind of legacy he would leave once out of office – this portrait indicates that he still ought to be concerned.

A wonderfully nutty compilation of equally-disturbing and hilarious official portraits can be found here, which should be official viewing for anyone getting ready for a close-up in oils.


Filed under: Canada, Politics, , , ,

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