Iggy skips out of economic conference to go back to Harvard?

“If I am not elected, I imagine that I will ask Harvard to let me back” — Michael Ignatieff to the Harvard Crimson published November 30th, 2005

Given Michael Ignatieff’s recent troubles in the polls it appears that he is retreating to his safety zone.

Here is the October 15th media advisory from the Canadian Chamber of Commerce listing Michael Ignatieff among the distinguished speakers to discuss “Canada’s competitive edge and economic prosperity” on October 21st. Michael Ignatieff is scheduled for the 8:10am timeslot where the Liberal leader is scheduled to discuss, “Canada on the world stage: keys to success”.

But here is today’s updated schedule for the same event:

Bob Rae is now listed in the 8:10am timeslot and Michael Ignatieff is off the schedule. Why would the Liberal leader skip out on a discussion about Canada’s future economic prosperity? The economy is the #1 issue to Canadians and Mr. Ignatieff has been trying to outline an economic agenda so that the Liberals can compete with the Conservatives in the next election, or at least outline their agenda before the next budget. So, did the Liberal leader have a better offer?

It appears that he did.

Michael Ignatieff is scheduled to speak on a panel at Harvard to some friends at the Carr Center for Human Rights Policy on Wednesday October 21st. Ignatieff is scheduled to speak on a panel titled “Why Human Rights Matter: Human Rights as Public Service”.

UPDATE: Now, we learn from David Akin that “OLO calls to say organizers jumped the gun Iggy staying in ottawa”

How did “organizers [jump] the gun” when Ignatieff was scheduled to speak at a conference, but then days later he is removed and replaced by Bob Rae? It appears that the schedule change could have been deliberate to fit Iggy’s opportunity to return to Harvard to give a talk to his fellow Crimsons.

This incident is reminiscent of Michael Ignatieff’s jaunt to the UK to deliver the Isaiah Berlin lecture in the summer while some Canadians wondered why he wasn’t politicking at home.

Stephen Harper skipped out on a crazy Muammar Gaddafi speech at the U.N. to return to Canada to discuss the economy and he got an earful from concerned Liberals. Until just minutes ago, Michael Ignatieff appeared to be skipping out on a Canadian economic discussion to fly to the US to speak on a human rights panel.



  • terry1

    Warren T,
    Adscam is only still in the minds of you desperate and ignorant Tories. It is long past its best before date and the newspapers have lost serious interest in yesterday's news. The current government, however, ran on cleaning up that kind of stuff, have been much much less transparent and, as it now appears much less honest than the previous government. Because, and to remind you simpletons, not one Liberal MP was or ever will be accused, other than by the Tory lynch mobs. On the other hand the current debacle the reformatories face has all come out of the PMO directly, one of the joys of attempting top down censorship in a democracy with an educated press corps.

    You just don't get it. Mulroney was sleazy and Harpo is on his way to outdoing him. I wonder how much he'll take from the hundreds of lobbyists now swarming around the easy prey to build his Calgary mansion.

    The smart money is already betting that the current smoke will end up being a five alarm scandal. History teaches us that stuff.

  • wilson

    Wanna stay on or near topic there buddy.
    We have all gathered here to discuss Iffy and his desire to be PM,
    IF he is not otherwise engaged with a lecture at Harvard.

    But I always enjoy a good ADSCAM story, if you want to share.

  • wilson

    Gee, then why are the Coalition of Losers so unhappy?
    They got what they wanted,
    they take turns keeping PMSH in government.

  • CanadianSense

    I included your excellent catch and did a slight twist, Gilligan has been officially replaced. You are now the Real ASSKicker in Canadian Politics! (My personal opinion)

  • wilson

    22% after the NEP ,
    and then the first Food Bank in Canada was created, in Edmonton.
    Gerard Kennedy should remember that event well.
    It was a rough 13 years for Western Canada.

  • real conservative

    Iffy wants to keep his foot in the door in case the hoped for job in Kanada doesn’t pan out. What is really sad is that Microsoft is big left wing supporter even though it made its money selling software to business.

  • Richard

    Burlington, Ontario.
    hence his obsession with Oakville.

  • wilson

    Why is Terry 1 the main event here?

    So has anyone found out if Iffy or Rae is speaking, now that going to Harvard had such bad optics, it was cancelled?

  • Observant

    As long as the Liberals cling to Iggy as their leader, they will continue to plummet in the polls … and of that there can be no doubt. He is a failed political leader, and there is no way his leadership can be resurrected.

    Ignatieff should abdicate and leave Canada with the woman he loves … back to Harvard or wherever.

  • platty

    I would like to ask Stephen the same question, why is Terry -1 allowed to steer so far off topic on every thread they are on? There should be no problem allowing comments from all POV, however, when they turn into rambling insults being made only to deflect from the threads topic, then perhaps it should be taken past the warning stage.

  • john g

    I disagree. All this guy is interested in doing is dragging the Tory blogs down into the cesspools. He’s succeeding admirably.

    I don’t believe in suppressing dissenting opinions because you want to live in an echo chamber but Stephen, you and Janke are doing yourselves a disservice by allowing this character who has no interest in a reasoned debate to drag your comments section down.

  • terry1

    Platy, when you take the sum of Bruce, Wilson Canadian nonsense and some others they don't add up to one kernel of debate but a ton of insults and plain idolatry of the Tory God.
    They only want anti Liberal or anti Iggy love ins.

    The host is still writhing from the ass kicking he got from fellow blogger Kinsella and was looking desperately to change the subject.

    The check issue has once more shown the reformatories they are crooked, and unethical. They had clearly promised a different type of truly accountable government. Instead we have a bunch of self serving characters who will do anything, legal or otherwise to stay in power.

    They are a complete failure fiscally and again this gang of false idolizers can't see that.

  • terry1

    Cat its good to know you can read because its obvious you can't judge your politicians very well. the very fact you follow Harpo's misadventure blindly makes me wonder about your skills. Having a dance partner like canadian nonsense furthers my apprehension about your skill sets and judgement.

    The LPOC has an absolutely perfect “troll” in Kinsella who is now keeping the Reformatory war room up all night looking over their shoulder. If our host could keep up it would be more fun but then an apprenticeship is always needed. Stephen does try to keep his tory perspective but goes too far in hiding the defects only making them more obvious and you suckers fall for it.

  • terry1

    wilson, sorry to spoil your love in and keep some modicum of truth flowing here. you people love to bask in your own lies and attack ad style debate. That's sad.

  • terry1

    bec I post freely on several liblogs just as I do here w/o censorship AND AM CRITICAL OF SOMETHINGS LIBS DO . Just look around at some of the so called progressive blogs and you will see major censorship. Janke's junk blog is an exception becasue he's the worst of the “blind leading the blind” type of blogger .

    I applaud Stephen for allowing more open debate here although it's hard to see through all the tory blindness to get reality here. Some posters have stopped commenting here becasue they were regularly challenged on their “facts”. They still read it voraciously though.

    The post above you referred to would have been difficult to show a link only. The host is free to shorten any post he sees fit and I always post links when practical.

    But thanks for trying to deflect the true debate off course once again and showing your bias w/o supporting facts.

  • terry1

    Jan, Rae also plays the piano and apparently you like that talent in a politician. You sure don't appear to dislike the fiscal incompetence of ever growing structural deficits and stealing money from the public. Your hero can lie and play the piano at the same time

  • terry1

    And one day you will lose your title of chief crackpot in Oakville reformatory circles. Your name came up again with knowing guffaws just a couple of days ago. How are the letters, blaming the federal libs, for the Oakville power plant going? The developers are quaking in their boots…..NOT.

  • terry1

    Just a follow to a subject you were all sticking your chests out about just over a week or so ago. You were all thinking the Lib ship was sinking fast and that 3 Lib MP's were about to go brain dead and join the reformatories.

    Funny thing happened to that tory war room rumour…….check mate had started its road to showing how out of touch the reform war room was and is and easily drowned out that misleading rumour. The rumour culprit, a tory assistant to a cabinet minister, was even caught.

    Often times dirty politics get caught in a vortex and I would say the tory war room has that sinking feeling these days. Where there is smoke there is usually fire and a major reformatory scandal is lurking around the corner.

  • terry1

    Cat, speaking of hansard…here's a wonderful piece that is there for the ages:

    “Here is what the Prime Minister said,” the Minister continued. “‘Listen. We are the government. I don’t see why we can’t try to get credit for what we do. I hope we do so. There is nothing to be ashamed in that.’ Do members know who said that? It was Prime Minister Jean Chrétien.”

    The Conservatives behind Mr. Baird did not boo. They howled delightedly. Indeed, several stood to applaud.

    So it was spoken and now so it is written in the record of Parliament, forever cast in proverbial stone. Nearly four years ago, Stephen Harper’s Conservatives came to power on one promise: that he and they were nothing like Jean Chrétien and his Liberals, that he and they were different, better. And here, nearly four years later, was John Baird, one of Mr. Harper’s most trusted ministers, wrapping himself in ideals of a man who represented everything the Prime Minister once despised, making Mr. Chrétien’s words his own.

    So much for all that then.

    Thanks for reminding me to look for stuff going in there.

  • terry1

    Bec, per your request here's a link for you to look at:


  • CanadianSense

    Terry, Parnel

    You like to pretend you have friends, you like to pretend you know people but every single time you are asked to prove or back up your claims you fold like a cheap suit.

    Sadly, the pattern seems to repeated in the Liberal Party after Chretien left.

    Don't panic the leadership of the Liberal Party will be resolved shortly. Bob Rae is too skilled to let MI keep messing up.

  • Liz J

    When it comes to front page news in our “news” papers, most know the front page news is all about the media's political agenda and not about the good news and what's really important to the people. We're lucky if we find the real facts by page 4.

    As for polls, up or down, whatever, they merely reflect trends and right now the Iggy Libs are trending down and down. Next week he may pull off a miracle but he really should refuse any help from his “friends” in the LPC and be his own person. If he can't sell himself with some good policies and ideas he's toast.

  • Jen

    Quesion is hollinm ” why hasn't TOM CLARK, TABER, OLIVER, CBC, CTV, G/M, T/S, PPG say anything about it instead of looking like fools. Blaming Mulroney for their beloved Trudeau creation of the debt which he left Mulroney is a sign that these entities in the media are liberals' very own personal secretaries to clean up after them. I guess the media is still stuck in the 90s.
    And since Tom likes to read the BOSTON GLOBE and NYtimes-maybe we should send them ” the story of “TRUDEAU'S 'HUGE DEBT TO CANADA.”

  • Jen

    Why is Terry 1 the main event here?-

    'he has been converted' that's why he wants to make his presence known as often as possible. Welcome Terry, nice to know you have been converted.

  • Liz J

    It could also be the bad polling as much as anything else that made Iggy decide to skip out on the Harvard gig. He seems to have realized he really has his work cut out for him right here with his butt in the Opposition seat, he would do well to stay focused on that.

    Trying to steal some thunder by trekking off to places like China or anywhere else wouldn't net him any credit here where people are more concerned with the economy and jobs than watching an Opposition leader grandstanding out of the country. He or his “handlers” appear to have made that deduction.

  • terry1

    Liz J, hysterical, at least you realize how Harpo has scored some good ratings and that it's not about his performance. And, if you really knew how the media works you would also know the opposition leader is never going to get good press because his job is not what journalists like to write about.
    Iggy will sell himself with his own persona and he has done a good job of that in person. His fund raising has been extraordinary and he is very well received wherever he goes. The fact Harpo and his thugs used some drive by smears to try and smoke him out is becoming irrelevant as the they get some of their dirt thrown back at them.

  • terry1

    Jan, you are a typical Alberta reformatort who hasn't changed the music for 25 years. Look around you. Things have changed and the Alberta tories are now in danger of going to history's dustbin with the election of a more openly centrist leader for Wild Rose; they will embarrass harpo.

    The MSM has jumped all over the liberals when needed but the harpercrites really ask for the attention and now are really getting some.

  • terry1

    Jen, Is that the best wakeup joke you could muster up? I have converted though. I used to dislike Harpo's philosophy now I dislike everything about him.

  • terry1

    Ivison hits the nail on the head:

    “All those Conservative supporters who voted to kick out the Liberals nearly four years ago in protest at the sponsorship scandal must now feel like the joke is on them.”

    Even the Conservative papers are now onto the dishonesty of this gvernment.

  • platty

    Ignatieff is just being Ignatieff, he is not a leader, he is obviously more comfortable at Harvard than in the House. And I am sure that his choosing Harvard over Ottawa will not surprise anyone in Canada.

  • Liz J

    Ivison is a tad off base to be equating the Sponsorship/Adscam with anything this Conservative government has done. This BS about the fake cheques is another non-starter in the realm of scandals. It's nothing anyone is getting excited about beyond the Opposition. What is being talked about is the fact the Liberals and Dippers think we all fell off a turnip wagon and are incapable of figuring out where the money is coming from.

  • Jan

    Apparently you didn’t live in Ontario during Rae’s years as Premiere.

    I gather from the tone and quality of your posts that you are a very young man, so perhaps you were not even born. You may be interested, therefore, to do a little research but suffice it to say for purposes of a comment on a blog that by the time Rae was voted out of office he was not a very popular man, either on the right or the left, for among other things, his stunningly poor management of Ontario’s economy.

    I’d also be a little careful about characterizing spending you don’t agree with as theft. Thanks to the Liberal Party of Canada, we now know precisely what theft looks like and this doesn’t even come close. Though, maybe you should take that issue up with those who demanded more and faster stimulus spending at your next Leadership convention. That is so long as you are provided with some options and a ballot bearing the name of more than one candidate.

  • hollinm

    Of course Oliver was a personal friend of Trudeau. They went canoeing together. So Trudeau is a big hero for Oliver. He isn't going to say anything against his friend.
    The rest of them continue to live in a bygone era. Everybody hoping for the reincarnation of Trudeau and Trudeau mania. Of course they live in the Ottawa bubble but virtually half if not three quarters of the country despise the name Trudeau. He single handledly repatriated the constitution without Quebec signing on, introduced the Charter which has the minorities running the majority etc etc.
    Libs continue to say it was Mulroney's deficit and blame Mulroney for the sad state of the country back in the 80's which we know is not true. So there will not be much support for the Conservatives among the media elite in this country.
    After all without the daily media releases from a Liberal government to write their stories and Harper unwilling to play their game of gotcha journalism they have to dig and scratch for their fluff stories. It will not change in the near term I am afraid.

  • terry1

    The lib scandals stated off with little bits of arrogance and grew from there……….harpo is starting to look like Pinocchio!!!

  • terry1

    Mervin, I think you must visit Deifenbaker's grave every day looking for guidance.

  • terry1

    Yada YADA YADA

  • terry1



    “Former prime minister Jean Chrétien has been awarded the Order of Merit by the Queen in a ceremony at Buckingham Palace.

    The 75-year-old is only the fourth Canadian to be presented with the order.

    The others were neurosurgeon Wilder Penfield and former prime ministers William Lyon Mackenzie King and Lester B. Pearson.”

    I wish to heartily congratulate him on this very high honor.

    The award, called a “gift from the sovereign,” is given to those who show “exceptional distinction” in the arts, learning, sciences and public service.

    Only 24 living members can hold the order. It places Mr. Chrétien's name alongside figures like Mother Teresa and Nelson Mandela.

  • CanadianSense

    Some in the MSM are worried if the Polls continue to drop for the Liberals they might lose their anon Lib sources.

    Those anon. Lib sources who are very unhapppy may be crossing the floor and if they join the government they quickly learn the benefits of playing on a winning team.

    I am not sure the CPC want any Liberal MP's to cross the floor. Bad optics for all.

  • CanadianSense

    I am not sure this is all his fault. His handlers/advisors have been giving the wrong advice, double booking and muzzling the “great thinker”.

    The refusal by MI to present any REAL detailed alternatives with costing (EI excluded) is very problematic.

    The strategists for the Liberals in the last four years have introduced two ideas now , The Green Shift and 360 EI, both widely viewed in a negative light.

    I don't understand the wisdom of attacking the improper use of props with the use of props. Oversized cheques vs Door knobs.

    The opposition are failing to introduce alternatives instead they are consumed with 100% negative talking points.

    I don't think the Rosedale Gang are competent and Denis Coderre may have been correct with their decision making skills.

  • lorrainemarie

    Stephen – your blog has sunk into a platform for hateful name calling and blather with the person called Terry 1 or Parnell or then there was a Gail. No sensible discussions are possible. Your posts are excellent – but the comments section is unreadable , coarse language name calling and insult hurling to the point that discourse is impossible. I'm sure this is a deliberate attempt to sabotage your blog and a few others where these (or this) person trolls. Very sad.

  • hollinm

    Parnel……how did you know? :-)

  • CanadianSense


    thanks I did not understand his concern about a power plant. I have read the local community paper but have not given it any second thought as I don't suffer from NIBMY.

  • terry1

    Observant, how can you say he's a failed politician. He hasn't even led the party through one election and if you'd jog your reformatory memory HARPERCRITE lost his first one. You obviously have no clue how polls move or you are just being silly. If they can give the piano man 5 points for having his picture in the papers than you must understand how fickle voters really are. Attack ads that will be reciprocated in due time will even out the negative stuff. Stay tuned.

  • terry1

    Off by a hundred counties!! No bingo for you

  • terry1

    Another stupid reply…how do mange to dream up this nutbar stuff………….no libs will cross over. That's a fact.

  • CanadianSense

    John G,

    The host Stephen Taylor has an impressive site and will make the appropriate decision. I don't read 90% of Terry Parnel posts, a quick scan only as they are imported from Lib blogs and edited for his talking points.

    John G,

    I also have empathy for people who are having difficulty with reality and use the internet to communicate with complete strangers.

    Charity begins at home. Terry is entitled to his free speech as we should be wary of bloggers who refuse or censor their blogs.

    This has been a very bad time for the Liberals, they might already be replacing their leader again.

  • terry1

    Canadian nonsense, you haven't a clue about Iggy's schedule or his advisors; your own party won't even talk to you let alone the libs. You've tried that make believe stuff before on another blog they kicked you off. Quit spreading your fantasies, lies and innuendos.

  • terry1

    I bet you move your head like him also!!!!

  • terry1

    Garbage once again.

  • terry1

    You know that I know who you are and what your reputation is in Oakville. Stephen didn't like the word crackpot used to describe you but I digress. Tell us you also never wrote a letter to the Star blaming federal Liberals for the power plant bout to be built there. I am about to get some more surprises for you. Someone who knows you has read your stuff here and confirms my knowledge.