Friday, April 27, 2012

How Much Self Respect Do We Have?

"Technically, we might still call it a democracy," Lawrence Martin writes this morning. But, "in practice it's a democracy in name alone." Martin, perhaps more than any other Canadian journalist, has tracked the decline of Canadian democracy. And he has not been partisan about it. He brought the same careful analysis to the abuses of the Chretien government.

But, he writes, "with the billy-club governance of the Harper era, we are breaking new ground in the subverting of the democratic process." Canadians seem to have finally cottoned to what is happening. The Globe and Mail reports  that Harper's reputation for competence and trustworthiness has taken a hit:

When Canadians were asked two months ago to name the federal leader they believed to be the most competent, 38.1 per cent said Mr. Harper. In the latest poll, that score dropped to 24.2 per cent.

When asked which leader they trust, 31.7 per cent said Mr. Harper in February compared to just 20 per cent in April. And, in terms of who Canadians believe has the best vision for country, the Prime Minister’s numbers fell by a similar amount.

In what is perhaps the government's most Stalinesque move to date, government scientists were accompanied by media minders to a conference in Montreal. Martin, whose experience stretches back quite a ways, writes:

The Harper Conservatives have been called control freaks a thousand times, but this is wild, even for them. This is the type of thing I used to see when, back in the 1980s, I reported from the Soviet Union.

No self respecting democracy would allow this abuse of power. The question is, how much self respect do Canadians have?


thwap said...

I have to wonder about the amount of shit that occupies space in the skulls of die-hard harpercon voters.

Owen Gray said...

Those who still support Harper, thwap, cannot claim that they are deep thinkers.

Anonymous said...

Harper is the closest thing to a dictator since, Stalin, Hitler and Mussolini. Their personalities are a typo. The controlling of the media, scientists, T.I.D.E. and everything Harper gets his hands on. Harper threatens anyone opposing him. Harper is full of, malice, spite, hate, and so vindictive and cruel, his sanity is suspect.

It's no wonder, they call him, spiteful Stevie.

sunsin said...

The man deserves a serious psychological study. Something obscure is driving him; I don't think it's just greed or bumsucking the rich. Did an NDP campaign worker run over his dog or something when he was a little kid?

He's scary and.... in a way, very sad. All that hate and insecurity spilling out. He could be PM for a long time and rob us blind if he just put on the happy face and threw a few crumbs here and there, but he can't. One sees him ending cowering in the corner of a mental ward, muttering about his Precious. There's a very definite Gollum air to him, the ambiance of the irreparably broken.

Owen Gray said...

The Gollum reference is very interesting, sunsin.

As Anon suggests, there is a spitfulness at the core of the man. One wonders if -- deep down -- he knows he's sold his soul.

Laughing said...

Have you ever made the mistake of vomiting off the windward side of a ship? Harper made such an error yesterday, claiming the NDP had resisted going to war against the NAZIS in 1939.

I can advise you from personal experience that the best response when you've been sick off the windward side is to wipe your face before too many other people see your mess.

But Harper's men have taken the opposite approach, two of them insisting today in the House that the "CCF-NDP" (whazzat?) really had tried to keep Canada out of the War, thereby smearing Harper's vomit on their faces too.

What can one say to that, but "Keep up the good work, gentlemen!"

Owen Gray said...

A superb analogy. I've always believed that Stephen Harper is not as smart as others -- and he himself -- say he is.