Now that a bit of time has passed, and you’ve been able to sit down and take stock of your situation, I trust you realize that your former boss had very little choice but to do what he did. It’s his responsibility, after all, to look after the best interests of the Liberal Party of Canada, and accepting your resignation is the option that does the least damage. I also trust you understand why he had to identify you by name; had he left you anonymous, he would have prolonged this affair and risked further damage to his party brand. Things that look like what’s described by the phrase “cover up,” for example.
Of course, you do appreciate that he’s done you no favors by naming you. You are now, after all, a “public figure” — not quite as prominent or (as you would probably see it) notorious as your intended target, but close enough to the dictionary definition that certain media types will want to ask you questions. And I suppose it would be just as well that you start thinking about your answers.
The only one that you don’t have to answer, of course, is “why.” They already know why: when a minister puts on a show of offensive bravado, it would take a soul of monumental generosity and honor not to succumb to the temptation to “get” him. Such folk, alas, do not exist in contemporary Canadian politics, let alone the Liberal Party.
There are, of course, some questions they will ask, such as:
- What, exactly, were you hoping to accomplish? You see, if your intention was to drive Mr. Toews to resignation and / or retirement, then you probably should have considered the possibility that your ammunition (to say the least) was inappropriate to the task. I’m sure you must be a fan of Warren Kinsella; his recent post should have alerted you that your attack created more than one victim, which I’m sure was not your intent. If the idea was to embarrass Mr. Toews, I suspect several of your colleagues will have suggested to you by now that Mr. Toews was capable of doing just that all on his lonesome. So, whatever answer you come up with for this one, you can almost certainly expect excoriation; your only consideration, then, will be just how much you’re prepared to stand.
- Why did you use your work account to set up the Vikileaks30 site? It certainly would have been better, in the long run, to use an account that’s not so readily identifiable, as the Ottawa Citizen showed in its investigation. More problematic is the problem that you’ve left your fellow party members: that they’re now in the position of needing to explain, to casual observers of politics, why one of their own employees was making such an attack, essentially, on “company time.” (There’s at least one Liblogger who feels that way.) You have to admit, this isn’t exactly what one would call “professional behavior.” It’s going to be awfully tough to explain in your next job interview.
- Why did you not take responsibility sooner? I suspect that a lot of Liberals are going to ask you this. In their eyes, they had the perfect opportunity to taint the present government’s popular legitimacy with these “robocall” allegations, and now your exposure has taken the fatal edge off that particular sting.
- What will you do now? Here’s the thing: you obviously have a talent for thorough research, particularly in legal sourcing. The problem is going to be convincing future employers that (a) you’re a responsible person and (b) you have good judgment. As I’m sure you realize by now, in this matter you demonstrated neither. But that doesn’t necessarily mean someone won’t give you a second chance.
Understand this: I’m not chastising you, that’s not my brief. Nor am I gloating at your misfortune, or that of your party. Vikileaks30 had its 15 minutes of infamy as a drive-by smear that backfired on you. But the press will say that 15 minutes isn’t enough to really tell the whole story. I hope and trust that at least you’ll have one ready.