For the record. Cool to see Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi in New York Times. Have a read.
“From Canada, Lessons on Revolution
By CHRYSTIA FREELAND | REUTERS
CALGARY, ALBERTA — Conventional wisdom has it that the Internet is dumbing us down and making politics more partisan. Sound bites are more effective than substance. The punditocracy that shapes these truisms is, needless to say, pretty certain they apply most powerfully to people in the provinces, especially those with a history of voting for the right.
That is why the election of Naheed Nenshi, a 39-year-old former business school professor, as mayor of Calgary, is a watershed event that should be of interest far beyond Canada, where he has already become a political superstar.
When Mr. Nenshi earned his upset victory last October, the first flutter of outside enthusiasm was around the fact that an Ismaili Muslim son of South Asian immigrants who came to Canada from Tanzania had been chosen to lead the capital of Canada’s conservative heartland.
The next wave of excitement was inspired by his campaign’s sophisticated use of social media to overturn Calgary’s old-boy political establishment.
The Twitter revolutions, which we are now so familiar with thanks to the oil states of North Africa, had first hit the land of the blue-eyed sheiks thanks to clever tactics like a comic YouTube video of people struggling with the mayor’s name, or providing simple online tools for supporters to color their Facebook pages Nenshi purple. Read the rest of this entry »