After much prodding by other bloggers, I set this up for my own writings. The name is in honour of the two women that mentored me throughout my life on politics and intelligence issues, as well as being wonderful family members, now alas deceased. I hope to live up to their standards at this site.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Why is Harper insulting the intelligence of Canadians this extensively?!?

I will have many things to say regarding the expulsion of Garth Turner from the ranks of the CPC in the days ahead, but before I start down that long path there is something I feel is in some ways even more important to focus on in this matter even than his expulsion, why and how it was handled internally, and how Turner was told. It is a piece of spin I have heard and seen from every CPC spokesperson on this matter. It is this claim that Harper and his Office had absolutely no involvement in this process whatsoever. This is patently a lie. The only way it cannot be a lie is to believe that the leader/PM has so little control of his party and MPs that they would on their own authority and initiative expel a fellow MP during a minority Parliament, especially when your party is the government. Now, how many examples in our Parliamentary history in all parties at all levels of government can we find another example of the leader being so totally out of the loop that a caucus member was expelled before the leader and his Office were involved in any manner in a minority government situation, even if only to approve the decision beforehand? To the best of my knowledge it has not happened before, and if it has happened it would have to have happened where the party leader had a track record of having little to no control over his caucus/members/MPs/MLAs/etc. Harper has a track record of exceptionally tight management style to the point of being criticized for it being too tight and micromanagement. Harper has the reputation of being exceptionally controlling, so the idea that he would have been left totally in the dark about so important a decision to any minority government is simply not credible, and anyone that is willing to put forward this argument needs to be laughed at with derision for insulting the intelligences of those being told this male bovine excrement.

Now, one may wonder why do I think this point is so important that I address it before any of the other issues involved in the Turner expulsion. Simple. This is something that all the people speaking for this CPC government have said. It is something that is so patently nonsensical that it is clearly untrue. Yet these folks are saying it with straight faces with great protestations that this is the truth despite its clear absurdity. What does it say about these people and the leader and leadership that has them saying such patently untrue things to Canadians in what is a clear insult to the intelligence and awareness of the average Canadian as to why something like this is simply not credible. If a leader and leadership of a party is willing to lie to the public about something as serious as this with such a totally unbelievable claim once, what else will they do so with, especially in things where the dishonesty/impossibility of the claim is not so readily apparent?

This is a man, Harper that is, that is a follower of the same political philosopher that formed the basis of the American neoconservative movement, a man by the name of Leo Strauss. I covered this in another post here. There are two core beliefs of Straussians though that are shown in this matter. The willing to employ the noble lie in the pursuit of holding power and the belief that only the opinions of the elites matter where government and governing is concerned. It is ok to lie to the general public to further gain and hold power, because it is in the service of the noble ends to which you plan on using that power for. As for the elites, we all know Harper sees himself as a very intellectual person, with good cause I would agree. We know from watching his history over the past two decades that he is very dedicated to his beliefs and principles and that he believes them to be noble and vital to the survival of this country. We know that he sees himself as other than the common man/woman although he professes great admiration for that common man/woman. He sees himself as a member of the elite, the same elite which after helping him get work as VP and then President of the National Citizen's Coalition then helped his rise to power in the CA and then to create the CPC and then to lead it to this point so far. We know he doesn't care about our opinions and views on this affair, otherwise he would not be trying to peddle something as nonsensical as having no involvement in the process to remove MP Turner.

This is dangerous behaviour from anyone holding the Office of Prime Minister, but especially someone on a crusade/mission of some kind, especially if there is a religious/moralistic element/nature. Those that will lie in the pursuit of power to achieve what is in their minds a noble end are almost always those that wreak the worst damage to a society and bring out it's worst instincts. It has never been Harper's good intentions that I have questioned but the tools he is willing to use/embrace in the pursuit of accomplishing the agenda those good intentions are in service to. We are seeing it here again today, and this needs to be remembered for what it was, a blatant example of contempt for the intelligence of Canadians and the willingness to make a totally absurd and incomprehensible claim as truth and defend it vigourously. We have seen this behaviour elsewhere in the past several years, and that is south with a President that is never wrong, sold a war under false pretenses (a way our PM wanted us involved in and was very passionate about saying so) and has been shown time and time again to tell his populace one thing when the facts clearly show the opposite. We have seen where that kind of government has taken our neighbours, I do not want to see it replicated here. Harper does not take orders from the GOP/Bush government, the problem is that his fundamental political outlook/philosophy is shaped by the same political theorist that shaped those that run the Bush Administration and much of the GOP Congress. That is why we see his foreign policy so similar to theirs, why he is so sympathetic to their needs even to the apparent neglect of our own as the Softwood Sellout demonstrated, and that the tools of deception, smear, and fear that the Bush/GOP have used to gain and hold electoral power in the USA are the same tools Harper and the CPC are using/embracing to gain and hold power in Canada. When I and others say that the Harper led CPC is not Canadian Conservative in nature we mean it. This man and his inner circle are members of the Calgary School of political thought which is heavily shaped by Leo Strauss the American political theorist who ended up being the foundation of the neoconservative intellectual basis. That is not Canadian Conservatism, nor is it rooted at all in Canadian Conservatism, which is why it is fair and right to call it American conservative thought/thinking because that is precisely what it is.

This business with Garth Turner is only the latest example of that. Turner was after all from the PCPC wing of the party with political views in keeping with that wing, which was rooted in Canadian Conservative thinking, but that is for another post.

P.S. Sorry about the long disappearance, a combination of computer troubles, internet connectivity troubles and a massive hyperfocus in it's first week on the Foley scandal in the USA kept me from blogging here. I am still more used to and comfortable in commenting at other blogs in an ongoing conversation than I tend to be in writing here, although I am trying to get over it. I expect I will also be doing a post comparing the level of blatant dishonest and abdication of responsibility in this matter by the PMO to the same behaviour in the Grewal fraud. I see a distinct and disturbing similarity in the level of blatant dishonesty involved despite the clear facts to the contrary in the public domain. Granted one was a cover-up of a fraud/scam after the fact and this appears to be an ongoing cover-up of whatever involvement Harper had in this matter for some reason but we will see how it goes over the next days to weeks.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, I'm sure Harper believes it to be a "noble lie."

Fri Oct 20, 04:21:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Scott in Montreal said...

All good points, Scotian. And what of the Clean Air Act? It is so transparently mushy. I would hasten to call it the Pretend to Do Something Act. This is like a smoker declaring this will be his last dozen cartons of cigarettes, then he'll see if he can figure out a way to quit by the time he's smoked them all.

Sat Oct 21, 02:20:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Scotian said...

Scott in Montreal:

Don't you mean the Clean Air inACTion? That was pretty pitiful wasn't it? Still though it is one thing to bring in bad legislation and try to make it pretty, it is another thing to clearly lie about a specific action actually taken as is the case in the Turner expulsion. I mean really, who knowing enough how to vote and what they are voting for would believe that any minority government would expel a member without any involvement of the party leader/Premier/Prime Minister?!?

That really bothered me when I heard it the first time, and then I heard it repeatedly from every government spokesperson from the government Senate leader on down. As I said, anyone willing to blatantly lie about something so brazenly false and then send out his minions to spread this lie and those minions (aka our government leaders) do so without any apparent hesitation is something one simply cannot let slide/pass unnoted. Perhaps they thought in the excitement of Turner's eviction and then the unveiling of their Inaction legislation on Clean Air it wouldn't get much notice by people. I don't know, but it is a rare example of CPC lying from the top on down where there simply cannot be any other answer save the one I listed in my post, and anyone that seriously believes Harper has so little control over his government/caucus has clearly demonstrated how little they pay any attention at all to political matters.

No, this was a blatant insulting of the intelligence of all Canadians, and I have to wonder why he felt he had to do so. He could have said he had no involvement in this save to tell the Ontario caucus when they brought this to him that he would abide by their decision to still have this as a grassroots effort without it being driven by the PM. So why didn't he? Why did he take what was clearly the most patently absurd and unbelievable course? Why did he think this lie of uninvolvement was so important that he was willing to risk the mockery and scorn of Canadians for it rather than tell the truth about whatever his real involvement was? I think these are questions with illuminating and insightful answers into how this PM thinks and operates.

Sat Oct 21, 01:05:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Steve V said...


"The only way it cannot be a lie is to believe that the leader/PM has so little control of his party and MPs that they would on their own authority"

You have already made this point, but it really is ridiculous to think that Harper didn't sanction this move. Harper has created an atmosphere where MP's and Ministers are scared to speak out of turn. Given this climate, how can anyone believe the Ontario MP's would do something so outlandish without an okay from the overlord. I am of the opinion that the PMO hatched the idea, instructed the Ontario caucus to boot Turner, so as to remove the direct link and let the whole mess get lost in confusion. The most controling PM in our history, who is downright paranoid when it comes to message control, is unaware of Turner's ouster- come on.

Great post, hope there is more to come :)

Sun Oct 22, 11:54:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Scotian said...

Steve V:

I'm working on it, but between my own computer acting really buggy (it is a ten year old model so I am not too surprised, thankfully since my father is upgrading his system I get his old one which is several years newer than the one I am using and hopefully a lot more stable) and Blogger acting up a fair amount of the time it has made blogging here almost impossible. Several times in the last fortnight I was working on posts when either blogger ate it on me or my system locked up forcing a reboot and losing the material that way.

With any luck I get my upgrade in another week or so, and that should help a lot. Indeed, I am having trouble leaving comments at other blogs (even reading them for that matter thanks to the tech hassles) where I do not have to take quite the same amount of time considering exactly what I am going to write about since it is a response to a post/comment instead of a new one on it's own like here at Saundrie.

I'll do my best, so don't give up on me.

Incidentally, my point about what Harper was selling regarding Turner wasn't that he wasn't behind it, I can't know that for sure although I will admit I strongly suspect it. My point was more basic, how can any PM expect anyone to believe any minority government would eject an MP from it's ranks without at least consulations with and approval of whatever the caucus decides given beforehand by the leader of that party? It was the "absolutely no involvement whatsoever" that I found so blatantly deceitful. Regardless of what one thinks about how controlling this PM is the very idea where any party would do this without involving the party leader/PM is concerned is absolutely laughable.

So I have to wonder exactly why this PM sold such a clear bill of goods, and what does it say about those that work for him at the top levels of our government that they were willing to go out and repeat this clearly nonsensical claim? That they were willing to claim as the truth in public something which simply cannot be true? That to me is what made this so particularly disturbing, even by the levels of deceit I have come to expect from Harper and his CPC government. That is why it got the main focus instead of my opinion on the turfing of Turner, the timing, the basis and the wisdom or lack thereof behind said turfing. I think this is a major telling point about this PM and his party/government's ability to tell the truth even when it is blatantly obvious what that truth must be.

Sun Oct 22, 03:37:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Dave said...

Great post, Scotian. I've been away and with limited time, just now got to read it.

Well done.

Sun Oct 22, 04:36:00 PM 2006  
Blogger scout said...

my first stop in and i have to say i'm impressed....have not seen as much in depth on the turner topsy anywhere else.

i suppose tom flanagan turned harpo onto strauss. it is clear he must have known.

Tue Oct 24, 10:17:00 PM 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I believe that that is why most Conservatives have big Pinnocicho noses.

Thu Oct 26, 11:30:00 AM 2006  
Blogger Karen said...

I don't know if you've seen this excerpt from Well's new book, Right Side Up.

I know you have extensive knowledge of Harper already, but I thought you might be interested.

Also, I was very sorry to read that you were experiencing health difficulties. I hope all is well.

Tue Oct 31, 12:06:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Scotian said...


My health has not been terribly stable for many years now, it tends to go up and down, but I thank you for your concern. As for the Wells bit, yes I was aware of it, indeed it underscores why I consider Harper so dangerous to underestimate and why it is so necessary to decisively defeat him and his political ideology for the future of our country. While I find many points of commonality with the GOP and the Bush Administration in how they operate and in the ideology they share in terms of raw intelligence and ability Harper has always far exceeded GWB. I have never thought otherwise. If he was as dim as GWB then I would be far less worried about him and his party/government.

I am sorry the response was so delayed, I finally upgraded late last week and had to spend several days gaining some comfort with my far more powerful computer system, I went from being about 13-14 years from being cutting edge to only 3-4 years, and wow what a shift...:) Not to mention needing to master a new operating system. Hopefully this means I will be starting to post more frequently again. I do hope you enjoy my read on the 2006 American midterm elections.

Wed Nov 08, 03:48:00 PM 2006  
Blogger Blue Girl, Red State said...

I don't comment often over here, but I visit you frequently. What I know of politics from my neighbors to the north, I learn here.

Thank you for your voice!

Fri Apr 06, 11:11:00 AM 2007  
Blogger Blue Girl, Red State said...

P.S. - So can we expect new posts soon?

Fri Apr 06, 11:12:00 AM 2007  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


Tue Jan 05, 07:41:00 AM 2010  

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