So there has been talk lately of Kevin O’Leary possibly running for the federal Conservative leadership.
First he offers Rachel Notley a cool million dollars to step down as Premier of Alberta, then he muses to CBC that he’d consider a run at the leadership. In a recent poll of Conservatives, he comes out tied with Peter McKay at 25% each in terms of support. Supposedly the whole Trump phenomenon, the appeal of a plain spoken businessman and what such a person could offer politics has crossed the border.
It’s a stupid idea and should go away.
First, Kevin O’Leary is bald as f*ck. Yes, we put this first. People do not like bald males unless they’re studly Hollywood actors (see Dwayne Johnson, Patrick Stewart et al), athletes (see George St. Pierre) or babies. Bald men are villains. A disproportionate number of referees in sports tend to be bald, ever notice that? They didn’t draw Mr. Burns in the Simpsons with a full head of hair. There are numerous studies out there that bald men generally have an uphill battle against perceptions of vigour, sexual attractiveness and trustworthiness. So, do we want O’Leary up against Trudeau in a televised debate?
Second, he’s an entertainer. When you watch him on Dragon’s Den or Shark Tank, he says a lot of provocative things that are meant to draw a reaction. Politicians aren’t supposed to draw reactions, they’re supposed to deal with reactions. Once you cross that threshold to where you’re saying shit just to get people riled up, you’ve made it really difficult to come back to the real world where we generally prefer calm, reasonable leadership.
Third, he’s a caricature of a greedy capitalist. Nothing pisses us off more than portrayals of conservatives as being obsessed about money. We should be obsessed about economic liberty and the triumph of free markets over government control and over-regulation. Increase economic liberty and wealth is created – for everyone. Capitalism is not synonymous with free markets and competition. Just the opposite. What would Kevin O’Leary (or Donald Trump for that matter) do if they were offered a business opportunity in a sector that had limited or no competition due to government regulation? They’d jump on it. Capitalists are not necessarily champions of the free market, they’re champions of money. And if that’s your only calling card, you expose yourself to attack from the left as being uncaring for those who are disadvantaged in our society, and that is not true about conservatives.
Fourth, and last – he’s worked for the CBC. What self-respecting “conservative” takes a government paycheque from the worst example of a leftist-biased organization when there are plenty of private sector avenues for him?