That weren't no DJ, that was hazy cosmic jive

Is this the beginning of the end?

The Conservatives, leading most polls for the best part of the past couple of years, have always maintained an aloof confidence in their capacity to win a third straight minority government. “We don’t want an election, but bring it if you dare” seems to have been their general refrain.

Now, we see them scrambling. They know that their opaque, secretive, and cronyist approach to governing causes Canadians more than a drifting malaise. The Cons’ behaviour now has a name. Contempt.

Contempt is to Spring 2011 what Prorogue was to Spring 2010. It’s a hook for voters to hang their unhappy hats on. In the heat of the prorogation furore, the Liberals came as close as they’ve been in a long while to outpolling Team Harper. Having suddenly crashed into that realisation, the CPC are throwing ballast out of the balloon as fast as they can, and without any hint of their legendary coolness.

Here’s the crime bill budget, fine, take it and read it. Alright, we’re happy to call for an RCMP investigation into illicit manoeuvres by Tory staffer Sebastien Togneri, who to stymied press rights to Freedom of Information. O.K., fine, while we’re at it, here’s David Carson, Harper aide who’s peddled his influence for business dealings, and yes, maybe there’s a connection to an escort. Take it all. Don’t say we never did nothing for you.

It’s a hectic week for Team Harper. Flipping aloofness into a semblance of concern. Flipping denial into admission. But you can’t express genuine contrition by just scatter-gunning multiple confessions of wrongdoing and abuse, all of a sudden, only under the most extreme duress of democratic procedure, in what is gearing up to be the final week of the 40th Canadian Parliament.

It smells like election panic.

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The day Sauron cried Uncle

We’ve seen the Conservatives dump reams of documents, only after having been subjected to the furnace-heat of Parliamentary democracy, before. The Afghan detainee files, for example, which ended up looking like this:

An eleventh hour release of budget items totaling two-thirds of a billion dollars, only minutes from being sat before the Commons committee deliberating on charges of contempt, does not an accountable government make. In doing so, they’ve managed to solve none of the arguments that they lack any modicum of transparency or respect for the House, while also fuelling more evidence that they are content to pour hundreds of millions of dollars into ideological trinkets and baubles.

If they’d complied in the first place and released the figures, Harper would only be accused of this “oh-so-lefty” spendthriftism. Now, he’s got that sticky accusation, plus the ever-deepening stain of secrecy before democracy.

And this is the team that’s pushing for a majority?

Filed under: Canada, Politics, , , , , , , , ,


June 2020

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