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The reel thing? - Fiddler Ashley MacIsaac hopes to unite Canada


Well-Known TRIBEr
The reel thing?
Fiddler hopes to unite Canada

National Post
Published: Tuesday, March 21, 2006
Ashley MacIsaac says he is hoping to trade his fiddle and bad-boy ways for a new career as leader of the federal Liberal party.

The Cape Breton musician -- best known on stage for his electrifying performances and off stage for his drug troubles and sexual peccadilloes -- called his hometown paper on the weekend to say he plans to join the race to succeed Paul Martin.

He said he wants the job because he fears the threat of Quebec separation is poised to further divide Canada. "I would say it's going to take a very charismatic figure to turn Quebec into the province that has elected as many Liberals as it has in the past again," he said in an interview from Toronto.

"Clearly, there's a war happening in Quebec right now. And it's happening under the guise of we're just going to let it slip away because people aren't talking about it enough in the rest of the country.

"I see that's going to rear its ugly head really, really soon."

Mr. MacIsaac also said he wants to run to bring his youth to the party and to end the "continuous mockery that's been allowed to take place of my party."

This not the first time Mr. MacIsaac, a voracious reader of political books and newspapers, has mused publicly about running for elected office.

He canvassed for a seat as an Independent in Dartmouth, N.S., before the 2004 federal election, but dropped the plan when it became clear his past was too big a roadblock.

Mr. MacIsaac burst on to the Canadian music scene as a teenager and went on to play with such musical luminaries as Phillip Glass and Paul Simon.

However, scandal dogged him. Maclean's dropped him from its 1996 "Honour Roll" after he told a reporter about his 16-year-old boyfriend (Mr. MacIsaac was 21 at the time) and an appetite for kinky sex that included urination.

He struggled with marijuana and crack addiction. He filed for bankruptcy.

At a concert during the height of the SARS scare he made a comment -- which he has since insisted was an innocent joke -- about an Asian woman in the audience spreading the virus.

But he has been working hard to clean up his act.

Last fall, he said he hoped to study constitutional law at the University of Toronto.

And in his interview with The Daily News in Halifax, he insisted he is serious about his bid to lead the Liberals.

Mr. MacIsaac said he will finance his bid by selling some art he owns. Leadership contenders must pay the Liberal party $50,000.

The three pieces consist of paintings of the House of Commons, a Canadian flag and a cartoon depiction of the Last Supper with 9/11-era world leaders and terrorists.

He said the transition from entertainment to politics is something he has thought about all his life.

"I've never in my life had any reason to speak my mind if I didn't think that I had something that was politically motivating me to do so. As an entertainer, you're given a platform to be able to do that on a stage."

Having travelled the world and talked politics while doing so, he said he could bring a lot to foreign policy.

He predicts Prime Minister Stephen Harper's Conservatives will stay in power for another six to seven years. He would like to be a Liberal by the time they regain power, he said.
Alex D. from TRIBE on Utility Room

Ditto Much

TRIBE Member
MacIsaac is one of those guys who needs to have the shit kicked out of him every 6 - 9 months else he gets full of himself and starts to believe he is actually relivent.

I know this because I'm clearly one of them myself.

What does it take to field a candidate? can we manufacture a triber just for this occasion?
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TRIBE Member
AdRiaN said:
Oh, and I think Ashley MacIsaac is just taking the piss.

Not sure about that. Ever heard the phrase "There is a fine line between genius and insanity"?

I'm not saying he should be taken seriously or that he is in fact serious...but the man is a musical genius but at the same time kinda bat shit insane.
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TRIBE Member
At the very least if he runs, he'll awaken some interest in politics. Even if the idea is fairly absurd.