We do, of course, live in interesting political times. And it’s been an interesting week.
Let’s flit around the political world and see whazzup.
First, the Kiefer Burn heard round Canada.
Most of you know that actor Kiefer Sutherland is Canadian — son of the great Donald Sutherland. But did you know that he is the grandson of Tommy Douglas — father of Canadian universal health care and one of the most admired Canadians of all time?
This week Kiefer went after Ontario premier Doug Ford for having the gall to say in an editorial in the Financial Post that Tommy Douglas would have approved of Ford’s cost cutting actions.
Kiefer wasn’t having it. He tweeted to Ford and told him to stop using his grandfather’s name and image to advance his political agenda.
And he further tweeted: “After all, I knew Tommy Douglas and you Sir, are no Tommy Douglas.”
Now for some irony.
In 2017, US President Donald Trump was briefly in love with French President Emmanuel Macron. That relationship soon soured, as Trump turned his fickle affections to Kim Jong Un. But, during those heady days, Macron gave the President an oak tree which was planted at the White House by both leaders. The tree was to symbolize the tenacity of the friendship between the two nations.
Yeah, the tree died this week.
Ironic! And a bit hilarious.
Also this week — not political, but weirdly delicious — Justin Bieber challenged Tom Cruise to a cage fight.
I know! Like there is no beef between these two as far as anyone can figure. No long simmering feud. But nonetheless The Biebs laid down the challenge. On Twitter of course.
“I wanna challenge Tom Cruise to fight in the octagon. Tom if you dont (sic) take this fight your (sic) scared and you will never live it down. Who is willing to put on the fight?”
MMA fighter Connor McGregor (no stranger to attention seeking himself) quickly offered to put it on.
Now, Bieber is not noted for his champion fighter’s physique, but he does seem to be desperate for attention.
The physique problem is solved by challenging Cruise, a shorter, and much older, man. The attention demand was solved by the way Twitter reacted to the tweet. It blew up! Also the general consensus was that Cruise would kick Bieber’s… er, tiny rear end, should such a fight actually occur.
Anyhoo, that was a weird moment.
And speaking of Doug Ford, we have mentioned his cratering poll numbers in previous columns.
But it’s not only Kiefer Sutherland distancing himself and his family from the Ontario premier. It’s federal Conservative Leader Andrew Scheer.
Scheer was only too happy to be lumped together with Ford and other Conservative premiers on a Macleans magazine cover last year. But that was when Ford’s brief honeymoon with Ontario voters was at its height. The honeymoon is now over and recent polling suggests Ford could be a real problem in the coming federal election.
A Toronto Star poll found 54 per cent of Ontarians are “less likely” to vote for Scheer’s candidates on Oct. 21 because of Ford’s policies.
That’s a huge problem for Scheer. He has to gain seats in Ontario if he has a chance of winning nation-wide.
Ford has already done Scheer a huge favour by not sitting the Ontario legislature again until after the election. The last thing Scheer needs is for Ford to be in the news — and reminding people he is a Conservative — at that time.
Scheer is of course denying suggestions that someone in his team asked Ford to do so. Perish the thought.
In any event, it’s a boon to Scheer. However, Ford has proven to be somewhat, shall we say, unpredictable, so there’s really no telling what he could get up to in the coming months that might hurt Scheer.
He could, for instance, challenge Tom Cruise to a cage fight.
It’s just a prime example of how cold politics really is. Last summer Andrew and Doug were BFF and now Andrew doesn’t even want to know his name.
If they had planted a tree together, I’m guessing it would have died.