Tuesday, December 06, 2005

Jack Layton likes trees, but dislikes tree spiders

In the first of the Ministry of Misinformation’s profiles of the four federal party leaders, we’re getting to know Jack Layton. This fresh-faced man was born, smiling at the world, in 1950 in Hudson, Quebec. Life for the Layton family was utterly changed.

“The first words out of his mouth were, ‘Universal and equal access to breast milk,’” recalls a proud Mrs. Layton. “Access to breast milk should depend on your appetite for breast milk, not on your appetite for capitalism.”

In his formative years, Layton liked to shed tears over the tragic inequality of life. For example, in the sandpit he realized that some children had monster Tonka trucks with loading hoists and removable cabs while some children had little more than a solitary marble – and a puny one at that – and he was visibly moved.

“This cannot be permitted in a country as rich as Canada,” he said, shaking his little fists.

Jack Layton has grown up to be a man who is passionate about everything. When he was in university, his best friend was a one-legged, one-armed, one-eyed, black, lesbian Jew with post-traumatic stress disorder called Yufkuptikluksuk. Jack defended her like a pit bull from her often cruel compatriots in late-twentieth century academia.

“A professor once talked to Yufkuptikluksuk very harshly indeed, asking why her essay on sentient plants was late, and my Lord – the inequity! The essay was late because Yufkuptikluksuk and I had been up late crying about the plight of the seals, and because of her post-traumatic stress disorder, Yufkuptikluksuk couldn’t stop crying once she started, so in my view, it was utterly discriminatory to punish her because of an intrinsic trait of her identity. I delivered that professor a lecture he’ll never forget.”

“Yufkuptikluksuk is the kind of Canadian the NDP represents,” says Layton. “If somebody doesn’t defend minorities, we won’t have any minorities left, and everyone will be like the majority, and the beautiful diversity of life will be lost.”

Jack Layton likes to frequently remind Canadians that he has written two books, both of which he is very passionate about. The first is called Homelessness: The Making and Unmaking of Crises. The second book is called Speaking Out: Ideas that Work for Canadians. One of the ideas that Layton says will work for Canadians is, “Trying to love and understand each other every minute of every day of every year.”

As Layton helpfully points out, if we love each other and demonstrate our love through collectivization and redistributive social programs, all our worries will be over.

“It can be done,” he says with a rather dreamy expression on his face that makes many an NDP womyn weak in the knees.

Jack Layton is married. He honeymooned in Australia. There he fell in love with the Inkabunka tree and now collects pictures, statues and any other form of representation of said tree. However, while in Inkabunka, a giant tree spider fell on his head and jammed its stinger through his skull and into the fleshy mass of his cerebral cortex. That is where Layton developed his dislike of tree spiders, which he admits is discriminatory, and with help from readings from the Dalai Lama, he is struggling to overcome it.

Ever since his encounter with the venomous tree spider, Layton has believed that he will one day become prime minister.

“Some people have said that maybe I’m getting too big for my britches,” says Layton combatively. “But as I remind them, it’s not how big you are, but how you wear your britches that counts.”

With this said he tucked his britches into his socks, jumped onto his bicycle, and pedaled away on another busy day of campaigning, wherein he will implore Canadians not to be greedy and instead, hug each other frequently.