Agar: Do we have political leaders or sheep herders?

Doug Ford became leader of the Progressive Conservatives in Ontario in part due to the support of Tanya Granic Allen at the PC leadership convention.

Over the weekend, Ford threw Granic-Allen off the PC boat.

This latest action by Ford demonstrates what is wrong with party politics in Canada.

I am not here to defend or condemn Granic-Allen. I am here to plead for a nation brave enough to demand independent thinking in politics.

At the provincial and federal level, the political parties seem to be nothing more than a bunch of pre-selected androids playing follow-the-leader.

They look like baby ducks.

Ford supported Granic-Allen until he didn’t. Justin Trudeau promised to let the democratic process work to select Liberal candidates for the last federal election until he didn’t like the results of that process in some ridings and then he stepped in to tell the locals who their candidate was to be.

Supporters of Conservative Party Leadership candidate Tanya Granic Allen, at the TVO studio, where the first leadership debate was held, on Thursday February 15, 2018. STAN BEHAL/TORONTO SUN/POSTMEDIA NETWORK

I know Liberal MPPs in Ontario who tell me privately that they disagree with some of Kathleen Wynne’s major policies and laws, but they dare not speak up in public.

They tend to defend themselves with mushy excuses by saying they have to go along to get along so that they can get good things done in the riding. But the few good things an MPP might get done at home can’t possibly mitigate their party’s well documented damage to the provincial economy. Damage done by policies Liberal MPPs might disagree with but would never fight publicly.

Both previous PC leader Patrick Brown and now Ford have shown that they want good little soldiers in their government, as well.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Justin Tang

Trudeau is so dismissive of the views of others that he has instituted a policy of no government support for community groups that won’t sign a pro-abortion pledge.

Are we to believe that the entire federal Liberal party is made up of 183 MPs who agree totally with Trudeau and his anti-free thought/morality agenda, or is the party made up of some who do agree and some who are so cowardly that their only matter of principal is selfishly protecting their cushy Ottawa jobs?

How is Trudeau’s extreme prochoice agenda any more worthy of discussion than Granic-Allen’s prolife beliefs?

Does politics in Canada have no room for more than the opinion of a small group of provincial and federal leaders?

Can Canada not produce elected officials of spine who will stand publicly for something other than what the leader dictates?

Do the leaders have nothing on their minds but access to power? Does character matter? Does a vigorous debate of issues matter? If so, can that debate only be between the leaders of the various parties?

It is the same with all parties in this country except the Greens because as the lone elected member Elizabeth May is left to chase herself around the room.

What do we need the MPPs and MPs for? Most of their constituency work is done by staff, so we could just as easily get along with a committee of community workers who interact with bureaucracy under the banner of the current king or queen.

Political parties tend to promote themselves as a big tent. They say proudly that all views are welcome.

But it isn’t true.

It isn’t true of any of them.