Elmer and Gilles obviously shorted their respective progeny in the gene department. And the department that was acutely aware of that problem was Foreign Affairs.
David Emerson may be a political opportunist and one of the worst kinds of turncoats, but no one can fault him for his skills and organizational leadership ability.
"I think people are happy we have Emerson as a boss," said one Canadian diplomat. "He's a very seasoned individual." Another Canadian diplomat expressed relief that the department has finally gotten a capable minister after a string impressively underqualified ones. "There was nowhere to go but up," said the relieved DFAIT official. "This is a guy who, unlike any of his immediate predecessors, has experience as a leader, experience as the manager of a large organization and in making decisions in complex operating environments. "With his credentials, his background and his skill set, he's certainly looking better than anyone since [former Liberal foreign affairs minister Pierre] Pettigrew."And to underscore just how bad Emerson's predecessors actually were ...
"This place has been so beat up that just a steady hand on the tiller will be welcomed," said one.So, Harper, having made two astoundingly bad decisions and having treated one of the most important departments in government as little more than feet-on-the-desk plum-posting reward and a game of political optics, finally had to go into his largely incompetent caucus and pull out the only person with enough leadership, management and organizational ability to clean up the mess - a lapsed Liberal. (And one whose loyalty might well depend on how freely he can run his department without the PMO interfering.)
As Impolitical says:
Gotta say, it's just sad to read such commentary. The Foreign Affairs department deserves much better than Harper's given them to date.Indeed. Imagine how different things might have been if Harper had chosen his Foreign Affairs minister on the basis of skill, knowledge and ability in the first place.
Too bad that he placed his own political fortunes ahead the requirements of the nation.