Sunday, August 17, 2014

They Call That Stupid

Droves of baby boomers -- myself included -- have lamented the political disengagement of the young. But, in the light of Michael Sona's conviction for election fraud last week, it strikes me that perhaps the young are on to something. Chantal Hebert writes:

Electoral politics is a blood sport and an intoxicating addictive one at that, especially in an era of permanent campaigning.

To work in federal politics these days is to breathe in partisan helium 24/7. Short-term strategic gaming matters more than long-term policy outcomes and consensus has become a poor cousin to finding a wedge to pry voters off a rival.

In public, that translates into a culture of mutual disrespect that is on exhibit daily in question period.
In private, it leads to an adversarial climate that makes it easier to rationalize making the most of the grey zone between what is ethical and what is legal.

Justice Gary Hearn wrote that Sona's arrogance -- and his willingness to talk about it -- got him into trouble. Arrogance is not confined to the young. But it's clear that Sona's arrogant elders got away scot free.

Perhaps the young have figured out that, when they get involved in politics, they will be used by their elders and then abandoned when they become a liability.

Smart folks -- young or old -- call that stupid.


Percival said...

Brings to mind the old adage, "old age and treachery beats youth and exuberance".

Owen Gray said...

It strikes me that the young have read that statement somewhere, Percival. And they refuse to be fleeced.

Edstock said...

That might explain why Justin is doing as well as he is, helped by all the doo-doo flung at him by Stevie and his orcs.

Because of the doo-doo barrage, IMHO, Justin doesn't look like the mendacious CONs or like the 'doctrinaire' NDP or Greens.

My 2¢.

Owen Gray said...

Your 2 cents always hit the target, Ed. When you were a kid, you must have done well in the penny toss.

Anonymous said...

'The power of accurate observation is commonly called cynicism by those who have not got it.' - George Bernard Shaw.

Something worth memorising, Owen.

Owen Gray said...

Shaw had a talent for capturing wisdom in short memorable phrases, Anon.

Pamela Mac Neil said...

Owen I found your article interesting and for me timely. I have been trying to understand why young people would join and volunteer for the Conservative party. I mean specifically Harpers conservatives. I too am a boomer and remember a generation that was fairly liberal socially and politically. Harper and his conservative party are not in ideas and values really conservatives. They are reform/alliance, which includes a strong evangelical christian belief system and following regardless of Harper wanting to keep these beliefs under wraps. This leads me to wonder if most of the young people attracted to Harpers conservatives are themselves evangelical christians and are drawn to the conservatives for religious rather then political reasons. While their allegiance is to the consevative party, I don't see them really engaged with the public in promoting the conservative policies and ideas. Anyway, I think there is a big differance from a generation that is engaged with a political party for social,political and philisophical reasons then a generation that is engaged with a political party for religious reasons. It would take a much better mind then mine though to do an indepth analysis and evaluate its impact on our culture.Something to think about.
Thx for your article.

Anonymous said...

Yes but? In a dictatorship, stupid doesn't matter. If stupid is worth keeping? They are sent to another country. Stupid that is no longer of any use, are thrown under a bus.

It seems to me? Sona in his smart alec arrogance, expected to be protected. However, I doubt Sona will ever see, the inside of a jail cell. This is Sona's first offence and I expect the Judge to only tap Sona, on his wrist.

Bruce Carson escaped prison because, he supposedly has cancer. Nor, is Carson a first time offender.

I expect the Duff will get off his crime because, of his serious heart condition. A first offense for the Duff.

I very much doubt, Wallin will pay for her crimes either. A first offender for her too.

The only ones that will land in prison, would be Brazeau and Harb.

Porter is doing an awful lot crying and begging to be let out of prison.

Owen Gray said...

It's really hard to predict what kinds of punishment the courts will render, Anon.

All we know for sure is, whatever the punishment, Harper would advocate more of it.

Owen Gray said...

In the case of Sona and Andrew Prescott, it would appear that your observation is spot on, Pamela.

The Harperites seem to be unswayed by evidence. Perhaps that's because they believe that God is on their side.

Kim said...

If you want to know why CPC is so effective in recruiting young people at the University level, like Skippy and Sona, you need to delve into the Manning Centre, the Calgary School Fraser Institute and their outreach programs in Universities. They identify vulnerable people, much like a cult and cut them from the herd, stroking the fragile ego and promising wealth and power.

the salamander said...

.. I would posit that we are now far beyond 'electoral politics' .. and that evangelical christians are currently a startling presence in our current 'Harper Government' as well as in a 'Secret Caucus' housed within the Parliament Buildings.. and of course, among donors, volunteers of the Harper Party, salaried PMO hacks, lawyers, consultants, data wanks, live & robo call operators etc.

Isn't it time that Canadians recognize or twig to the idea, that some, or all of these Rapture Believers.. whether young, old or in between see government & politics as a way to game & manipulate in favor of their religious perceptions or belief in 'invisible friends' up above?

Letting a single religious flavor & agenda infiltrate & dominate governance.. whether its theirs and Stephen Harper's wiggy Rapture Israel Dream.. atheism or flying spaghetti wonkers, catholicism, Jahoba's Crystal Order of Aliens or The Lordly Coven of Heavenly Stock Markets .. is twisted, flawed.. and taking Canada backward. full steam with the eager support of corporatist energy partners (who don't give a damn about what religion or myth. or fallacy gets the job done)

What my takeaway of the single slice of Election Fraud in Guelph was.. is that CIMS, The Harper Party, Ken Morgan, Sona, Prescott, RackNine, Jenni Byrne, Harper, Ray Novak, Arthur Hamilton, Blaney, Fantino et al found their true belief in Situational Ethics supported approx 250 ridings getting a dose of electoral clap, voting fraud and vote suppression.

And, that once they got their majority government, those same situational ethics were held on high via omnibus budgets, litigation and spying on Canadians and obstructing justice and truth, trashing transparency and accountability

Norm said...

I have a strong disagreement that the Harper Cons are Evangelical Christians, they may be lots of things but they are not Christians. Their policies
and practices are proof of that, for me anyway. They may be evangelical , “having or showing very strong and enthusiastic feelings”
but not Christian feelings. They don’t know the meaning of “love your neighbor as yourself”
I've seen so many comments that the Harper cons are Evangelical Christians that I wonder if my interpretation of Christian is flawed.

Owen Gray said...

It's ironic, salamander that neo-conservatives have long railed against the situational ethics of liberalism.

Harper, for instance, maintains that his position on the Israeli Palestinian war is based on moral principle.

As I recall, Christ faced the same kind of opposition from people who believed that man was made for the Sabbath. They were called Pharisees.

Owen Gray said...

It's an old story, isn't it, Kim? Get them while they're young, so we can mold them and shape them.