Stephen Harper, yogic flier?
Hoping to make a breakthrough in Quebec, the Conservative leader has recruited a founder and former candidate of the now-defunct Natural Law Party to run in the Repentigny riding, The E-File has learned.
A former Tory, Allen Faguy said he offered himself up to the Conservatives because he agrees with Harper’s vision of a decentralized, less-taxed Canada.
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– Is TM a religion?
Inspired by the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi, Natural Law claimed mass meditation and levitation could reduce stress, crime and disease. You won’t find any of that in Faguy’s 2004 platform.
“But I’m going to sort of recommend meditation” if on “a personal level people need to know what can improve their lives individually and even collectively,” said Faguy, 48.
Faguy hasn’t filed official candidacy papers, but Conservative officials confirm he’s their man.
Natural Law, a source of levity in previous campaigns, threw in the towel after the 2000 election, when it garnered just 16,577 votes.
“We offered the public solutions which to us were scientifically validated but it wasn’t received, understood,” said Faguy, who as a Conservative will use his mother’s name – Mackenzie – as his last name on the ballot.
“It could have been our mistake – our marketing wasn’t successful, we didn’t get the message out or people just didn’t get it.”
In 2000, Faguy ran for Natural Law in Westmount-Ville-Marie, getting 97 votes and losing to Lucienne Robillard by 23,105 votes.
Hair today, lip tomorrow. Maybe Jack Layton was a porn star or a Village Person in a previous life. How else to explain that moustache? It can’t be to court female or lefty Quebecers.
Moustaches are turnoffs, according to 55 per cent of the 2,143 women polled by Femme magazine. Only back and nose hair fared worse. (A footnote: not sure which leader benefits, but the poll shows for six out of 10 women size does “sometimes” matter.)
Upper-lip hair is also passe in local progressive circles. Former mayor Jean Dore shaved off his moustache in 1998 to prove to voters he had changed. Three months ago, city councillor Marvin Rotrand exposed his upper lip for the first time since 1969.
“It has been very well received – in the first couple of weeks, approval was running 95 per cent – (though) some said I had become a stodgy, conservative politician,” Rotrand said yesterday.
But Rotrand said the NDP leader should keep his “beautiful moustache” because voters equate such facial hair with an anti-establishment folksiness.
Not that Rotrand’s growing his back. “The nice response from women substantially younger than me has convinced me to keep it off, at least for a while.”
It should be noted the last time Canada had a moustachioed PM was 1920 (Robert Borden).
So Liberals borrowed their Quebec slogan – the bit about “moving forward” – from Paul Martin’s old company, Canada Steamship Lines. That got us thinking. Other parties should take catchphrases from leaders’ ex-employers. Harper, formerly of the National Citizens Coalition: More freedom through less government. Layton, once a Toronto city councillor: NDP – You belong here. Gilles Duceppe, ex-unionist: So, so, so, solidarite.