Saturday 7 December 2013

The Liberal Party of Canada’s frightening Borg video

Not the Liberal logo
The Liberal Party of Canada has come out with a disturbing new English-language video titled “Our Priorities for 2014.”

Hosted by Katie Telford, the Liberal’s National Campaign Co-Chair, the eight minute video claims to provide an in-depth look at the priorities that are driving the Liberal Party’s strategy for 2014. 

Telford specifically says that the Liberals have been thinking about what is required to “build for success” and to “build for a better Canada.” She mentions the importance of a great team, as well as next year’s policy platform and convention but then defers, saying “that is what we usually talk about”. (In fact, policy is the last thing Justin Trudeau talks about, but that is perhaps because he better than anyone knows the Liberal Party’s real priorities as spelled out by Telford).

First up according to Telford are Numbers. Specifically, “making them competitive, and addictive” (sic). Apparently when Telford wakes up in the morning she grabs her BlackBerry and the email she looks forward to most is “a very simple Excel spreadsheet full of numbers.”

At this point, around minute 1:30, things get a little creepy, with Telford resembling the Borg Queen in Star Trek. Telford says that the spreadsheet “tells me all the dollars that were raised the day before through all the different channels”. This bizarre paean to numbers goes on for another minute or so, devolving into a mantra about how dashboards and pie charts show donors and new members. After this eye-glazing performance Telford ends with: “So I challenge you: do you know your numbers?”

The second priority is Openness, a surprise perhaps for those in Liberal Centre who now have a hand-picked, parachuted member of Parliament, or for those in favour of Senate reform, or an energy policy that is open to the views of Canadians. Telford says that Liberals are encouraged to “hold open meetings, just like Justin does”. (Actually, Trudeau does plenty of closed-door fundraisers, where questions are curated, and has openly expressed disdain for Question Period in Parliament, which he rarely attends). Unbelievably, Telford even lauds the “incredible leadership race” that led to the Trudeau coronation, though her upbeat take is largely because “we increased our numbers”.

The third priority is Volunteers, the “real hard work”. Telford says that “she can’t wait till we start tracking volunteer numbers in 2014 so that we can start seeing those numbers too.” The lecture then continues like a morphine drip, with Telford saying that volunteers are “the missing number from the dashboard.” To paraphrase, it sounds something like: “We are the Borg. Lower your shields and surrender your ships. We will add your biological and technological distinctiveness to our own. Your culture will adapt to service us. Resistance is futile.” For a video, look here.

Fourth is “Saying Yes”. This, Telford assures us, is really simple. The Liberals are to “say yes to people, to ideas, and to experimenting”. New ideas include virtual phone banks and different kinds of fundraisers! The ideas, it appears, are exclusively to support the numbers, and the numbers are only to ensure the Liberal Party’s return to power. There is no other stated value.

What is a value-less mass of biology, heavily reliant on technology, that mutates with the exclusive purpose of its own survival and dominance? The Borg.

Telford the Borg Queen ends with the simple message. “We will need more. We need to keep increasing our numbers...I can’t wait to see our numbers at the end of 2014.”

(TE Wilson is the author of Mezcalero, a Detective Sánchez novel.)

1 comment:

  1. Sound like a bunch of college sophomores are running his campaign.