Well not all of the pundits- some actually have a healthy nose for the street- but in general the commentary is self indulgent blather that offers little in the way of true guidance as to ultimate success or failure.
Here is what we know to date, much of it instructive moving forward. As Susan Delacourt points out, the hyper coverage surrounding Trudeau isn't media driven, it's audience driven, Justin sells copy. This acknowledgement is of no surprise, particularly for Liberals who have used Trudeau as a primary fundraising vehicle for some time now, Justin brings in the people. Further evidence of this fact this week, the Trudeau campaign roll out has featured packed houses and overflow crowds.
There is a unique attractive quality to Trudeau which conventional wisdom doesn't quite compute when opining about "must do's". In other words, talk of "coronations", "messiahs" hurting Liberal fortunes are really irrelevant, Canadians ultimately could care less about process, so long as they find the end product attractive. Truth be told, most Canadians aren't intimately knowledgeable about past Liberal transgressions, put a fresh coat of paint on and a new face with appeal, nobody will devote ten seconds to discussion about a short circuited leadership. The leadership race is important because we deserve a healthy debate about ideas, we deserve to see Justin put through his paces and ascertain fitness. But, ultimately, when the dust settles, it will matter not to the general public how we arrived at "Liberal leader Justin Trudeau" when it comes time to vote in a general election.
Quite a bit of surprise at a poll yesterday which shows the Liberals under Trudeau rocketing to 36% support nationally, even more double takes at the Liberals over 40% in Quebec. Anyone expressing shock has failed to acknowledge a core underlying narrative in Canadian politics, one that has existed for years. Canadians YEARN for something different, we CRAVE anything that resembles a departure from politics as usual, our INDIFFERENCE is really a testament to DISGUST. Within that vein, I am not surprised in the least Trudeau fires up Liberal numbers, particularly in Quebec have we not just seen how the electorate desires a changed landscape? Perhaps we can argue an empty vessel at this point, we can scoff at superficial reactions, but to do so forgets other "waves" and the simple mechanics that create them. In other words, let us not get lost in advice from the political class, it rarely sees any swell coming because it is detached from the subject matter.
Nobody knows if Justin thrives or dives, he will be the master of his own destiny. That said, it is important to pierce through the likely daily dissection of every machination, there are underlying drivers which will trump over reactions and irrelevant concerns. The Canadian political climate is ripe for a new movement, particularly younger demographics, the current malaise a testament to a failed status quo. Should people find something to cling to, under the added bonus banner of good looks and charisma, so be it, it surely wouldn't be the first time such a manifestation has brought electoral success.