Monday, November 17, 2014

Time For A Walk In The Snow?


                                            http://www.dailymail.co.uk/

Conrad Black observed last week that the Harper government had "run out of steam." And Stephen Mahar suggested that Jason Kenny was ready and willing to fill the prime minister's shoes. Michael Harris writes that the Conservative base has tired of Stephen Harper for several reasons -- but, most particularly, two. The first is his lack of integrity:

Harper came to power promising to do things differently than the Liberals of the Ad Sponsorship era. The base expected a new integrity reflecting the best conservative values — integrity, frugality and respect for Canadians. Instead, Canadians have been fed a steady dose of behaviour out of the prime minister’s own office that redefines unethical and, in some cases, verges into the criminal.

Harper’s former parliamentary secretary, Dean Del Mastro, has been convicted of election fraud, including exceeding spending limits, failing to report a personal contribution of $21,000, and knowingly submitting a falsified document. This came on the heels of an earlier election-related sleight of hand — the in/out scandal — that saw the party plead guilty to election fraud.

Then there’s Arthur Porter, the man Harper appointed to oversee Canada’s spy agency, who is in jail in Panama fighting extradition to this country, where he faces a bevy of criminal charges. Finally, one of Harper’s closest former aides, Bruce Carson, is facing influence peddling charges. Carson was hired by Harper despite the PM knowing of his previous criminal record for fraud.

And lest we forget, there’s the whole Wright/Duffy mess and the murky robocalls business and self-serving rejigging of Elections Canada’s abilities to promote voter engagement and prosecute wrong-doing.

Harper also sold himself as a frugal manager of the nation's pocketbook:

This prime minister blew close to a billion dollars on the G8 and G20 meetings in Toronto and Muskoka. He blamed the debacle on “thugs.” He wasted $28 million on commemorating the War of 1812 when he was closing veterans centres to save a paltry $3.8 million. And he has doubled the cost of the PM’s personal security to a whopping $20 million and climbing. The once ostensibly cost-conscious politician now thinks nothing of spending a cool million to fly his own limousine to India for a state visit or burning $45,000 of taxpayers’ money to attend a Yankee game.

When it comes to matters that go directly to the Conservative soul, Harper's most fervent supporters have found him wanting. And they are encouraging him to take a walk in the snow.


19 comments:

Lorne said...

Let's hope the base remembers these things, Owen; I suspect the general public will not, especially with all of the accolades Dear Leader is receiving for his 'tough talk' with Putin.

Kirby Evans said...

Good post. I think it is interesting that so many Conservatives are ready to acclaim Kenny the new leader. If anyone is a disaster waiting to happen it is Kenny. He is a loose cannon, a university drop-out with no record of employment outside of government, a man with (let's face it) who is at the heart of swirling rumours about an ambiguous sexuality, and one who, when he goes off script, seems incapable of forming a rational thought. Now while some of these things shouldn't matter, for the Conservative base they are very important. If the Conservatives think that Trudeau isn't up to the job, what in the world are they going to make of Kenny?

Steve said...

Walk on!

Owen Gray said...

I suspect that there are all kinds of people -- more and more Conservatives -- who agree with you, Steve.

Owen Gray said...

It's interesting, isn't it, Kirby? Kenney's employment record just about matches Harper's.

Owen Gray said...

That "tough talk" was carefully staged for the home audience, Lorne.

mogs moglio said...

Men who have never worked at least Putin for christ sakes had a job before he got elected. Further there is no evidence of him in Ukraine after all he was at the meeting where junior Harper insulted him, was Harper drunk?

https://ca.news.yahoo.com/blogs/canada-politics/stephen-harper-ruffles-feathers-ahead-g8-summit-ireland-180233183.html

???

mogs moglio said...

https://www.google.ca/search?q=pictures+of+stephen+harper+drinking+beer&ie=utf-8&oe=utf-8&aq=t&rls=org.mozilla:en-US:official&client=firefox-a&channel=np&source=hp&gfe_rd=cr&ei=thtqVJzDCMrB8geDpIDAAw

Need I say more?

Toby said...

Owen, everything you say about Harper is correct but I see no sign that his supporters really get it. Most of the Conservatives I know merely listen to soundbites if at all. A few Vets are annoyed at the lack of support but since there is no one else to vote for . . .

Owen Gray said...

I suspect that's why Harper refuses to go, Toby. He believes he has a captive audience.

It will be interesting to see today's results in Jim Flaherty's old riding. Those numbers might get him to re-think his position.

Owen Gray said...

Putin is a nasty piece of work, Mogs. But I find it hard to believe that he takes Harper seriously.

Pamela Mac Neil said...

I believe Harper will do anything to stay in power. I can't see him leaving.I also can't see anyone from his party and/or base having the guts to tell him he should go because with him as leader they could lose the next election. As to his alledged comment to Putin about getting out of Ukraine, perhaps he should of considered telling Obama that the US engineered coup in the Ukraine will be seen as a threat to Russia.Putin and the other leaders must know about his hiding in a closet when the ottawa shooting crises took place. With that in mind, it's hard to take his "tough talk seriously." Harper doesn't give a damn for anyone including his base and party so he will stay to the bitter end.Also his pursuit of power, given the obsessive nature of pursuit will not be easily abandon.I for one hope he stays. Better chance for the Cons to lose.

Owen Gray said...

I'll grant you he's obsessed with power, Pam. I have a hunch, though, that -- should it become clear he'll lose the next election -- he'll leave.

Pamela Mac Neil said...

What would make it clear though Owen that he would lose the election? I think he is truly living in a bubble. He really thinks he can manipulate the electorate into voting for him.Unless something came out of the Duffy trial that would really denigrate him and force him to resign. That's a possibility. Either way it would be nice to not have to see his smug face anymore.

Owen Gray said...

I'm sure that those who live in the Harper bunker don't deliver bad news to the man who owns it.

But outside forces -- like the Duffy trial -- may break down the walls of the fortress.

We'll see what happens, Pam.

Anonymous said...

Harper is far too arrogant and stubborn to resign. He knows exactly how much he is despised, Harper's security bill has doubled.

Then there is Harper's asinine FIPPA deal with China. I don't know a soul that wants Communist China on our Canadian soil, what-so-ever. Harper has locked Canada into a 31 year horrible deal, with that Communist country.

Harper's religion does not believe in climate change. I resent Canada being governed, by Harper's religion.

Harper is sick and rabid to be a big shot on, the international scene. Harper is using every underhanded tactic, to win the next election.

I too would rather see Harper lose this next election, than step down. If Jason Kenny steps in? He is every bit as bad as Harper is. Lying in his face regarding his TFW. He has added Romania and Bulgaria to his list of, cheap foreign labor. Kenny will still bring in cheap labor for, the resource robber barons to exploit.

Owen Gray said...

Even if the Conservatives get rid of Harper and install Kenny as their leader, they will -- as Kirby suggests -- have big problems, Anon.

e.a.f. said...

harper will not leave for the good of the party because what is good for harper is good for the party. just ask him. only he can lead.

jason kenny is a joke here in canada. if he get on the world stage, oh my god, they will all know we are crazier than the americans.

the press harper got for his alleged comments to putin, like who are they kidding. we have only harpers p.r. flacks to believe on that and given their record, who would believe them.

harper is a bully and bullies do not confront bigger bullies, i.e. Putin. also, at world meetings such as the G 20 world leaders do not go around speaking in the suggested manner, it simply isnt on. harper is an unsophisticated buffoon, who on the world stage, no one pays any attention to. harper and his p.r. boys may think he is a major player but really no one writes about him in the european papers as a player. harper is sort of like the p.m. of turkey. he is in the building and they have to tolerate him. Canada is just a joke these days. My opinion on why harper does not attend many of these international meetings: he is out classed and simply does not know how to behave in polite society.
You may not like what Putin does, but you can not describe him a as a fool or coward. Putin never hid in a closet, harper did and the world knew.

like some in the u.s.a. say, g.m. is alive and well, bin laden, not so much. con harper could never make it in that league. He does not even have the personality Mulroney had, which got him some play in the U.S.A.

Owen Gray said...

Mulroney was a player on the world stage, e.a.f. Harper is just an awkward kid from somewhere.