Much as we amateurs and commentators would like to pretend otherwise, professional politics is skilled work. It takes years of practice.
It was therefore always rather arrogant of Michael Ignatieff to imagine he could start right at the top, particularly in a country he has not lived in for three decades.
The mess he has made of recognizing Quebec as a "nation" is evidence enough.
First, his supporters in the Quebec branch of the federal Liberal party make a big show of a resolution calling for recognition of Quebec as a nation in the Constitution. His people claim this as a big victory over Dion and Rae.
But once English Canadian Liberals react to this affront to the fundamental principles of Trudeauism, Iggy claims he is saying nothing different from the others. He now says he doesn't want quick constitutional change. So he has raised expectations among nationalists, and then said he will not meet them.
I want to return to the substantive issue later, but the man clearly is not a reasonable alternative Prime Minister. IQ and looks are no substitute for experience.