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William Lyon Mackenzie was Canada’s prime minister during the larger part of the first half of the 20th century. He managed to remain in power owing to his productive style of governance. His policies favored the economically challenged part of the society. Mackenzie’s gift as a leader steered Canada in to the social and economic success that is the background of today’s Canada. In addition, as a prime minister, he never relied on euphoria and sycophancy to gain his subjects’ favor, but instituted an appropriate mode of governance that accorded him a favorable reputation.
After the First World War, Mackenzie dedicated his life to politics. With the support of Ernest Lapointe, he became the leader of the liberal party. However, Mackenzie was a conservative politician in some aspects of his leadership. He became the prime minister in 1921 and began rebuilding the Canadian society and economy from the ravages of war. During this time, Mackenzie was of the opinion that the parliament was the supreme political institution in the Canadian democracy. He always depended on it for major decisions, particularly those that related to foreign policies. In one particular case, he allowed the parliament to decide on whether Canadian state should interfere in any way in a row between Britain and the kingdom of Turkey.
In the middle of the 1920s, Mackenzie facilitated a drastic reduction in the taxes on the people claiming that since the financial demands of the First World War had eased off, the government did not have a reason for high taxes. From his early days as the Prime Minister, Mackenzie demonstrated a considerable resolve to improve the quality of the average Canadian’s life. This earned him a reputation as an effective leader. However, in the 1920s, the allegations that the senior government officials were involved in a scandal, nearly extinguished his political career. During the height of the scandal, Mackenzie King demonstrated his high regard for political order by requesting the legislature to call for another election. Although the legislature initially turned down his request, it finally bowed to pressure and accepted Mackenzie’s request. In this election, Mackenzie won with a majority vote.
Mackenzie King sought not to directly interfere with the natural trend of the market and economy during his tenure. His government adopted a hands-off stance during the first stage of the late 1920s and early 1930s economic crisis. Only later, the government intervened when the crippling effects of the depression occurred.
The Mackenzie’s liberal mode of governance led the Canadian public into deeper crisis. The lapse in his government’s alertness cost him the 1930 elections in which he lost. Furthermore, Mackenzie defended his government’s position by refraining from supporting the government’s interference with the economy in any effort to salvage it from the economic crisis. In essence, Mackenzie demonstrated his fervent belief in his policies where he avoided unnecessarily criticizing the government.
Mackenzie despised the use of the government’s free assistance to the poor and unfortunate to gain popularity. Often his government would refuse to galvanize the citizens with low earnings and preferred that people work themselves out of their problems with the right conditions set by the authorities. This nature of Mackenzie’s politics depicted him as a proponent of absolute capitalist ideas.
Since he first assumed power, Mackenzie King sought to nurture Canada as an independent state, often restraining his state from joining its mother country, Britain, in its foreign military campaigns. In addition, before the commencement of a full-blown Second World War, he had cordial relations with Adolf Hitler the then chancellor of Germany. Moreover, he was optimistic that Hitler would serve as a better leader for Germany than his predecessors. This opinion appeared from Mackenzie’s belief in supernatural powers and superstition, which he incorporated in his political career and foreign policy. In this regard, he opted to handle the foreign affairs himself to avoid his misrepresentation by any appointed emissary. In his foreign policies, Mackenzie intended to detach Canada’s identity from the overshadowing European heritage. In this regard, he closely associated Canada with other American powers such as the United States of America.
Mackenzie demonstrated respect for the law and the constitution by upholding the democratic process during the height of the Second World War. He led Canada through elections despite the ongoing conflicts. Although Mackenzie preferred peace, he was cautious to ensure that the country’s military system was prepared as war was an everyday possibility. Furthermore, he kept the country economically stable through the Second World War. Although Canada considerably supported Britain during the Second World War, Mackenzie endeavored to establish a Canadian military force that was independent from the British forces. In addition, he advocated for a federal government different from the Britain’s political structure. After the war, Mackenzie sought to revert to the normal situation of the country. He eliminated the structures that had been specifically set up for war. However, Mackenzie displayed his favor for overt capitalism after the war by joining the cold war politics.
Eventually, Mackenzie retired from his post of the prime minister in 1948 after transforming Canada into a powerful nation with an exceptionally balanced economic and social structure. Profound economic prosperity, social order, and a healthy political situation in the country are the most dominant characteristics of Mackenzie’s leadership. He managed to avoid any acute influence of the British imperialism and politics, and succeeded in establishing an independent economy. Despite his extreme capitalist stance, Mackenzie managed to preserve Canada’s balance in the world politics. Mackenzie King left a legacy of Canada that he nurtured to grow into a global economic and political power.
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