The Family (Or most of them)

The Family (Or most of them)
The Family

October 9, 2008

Harper can go to hell

OK, so here's what an ignoramus our Canadian Prime Sinister Stephen Harper is. And just for the record, he definitely lost my vote on Thursday (not that he was likely to get it anyway).

After conceding the infinitesimal possibility in Vancouver earlier in the day that his Progressive Conservatives might -- shudder! -- actually lose the election, he showed up in Winnipeg.

And in the obligatory cute baby photo op above, it appears in his totally wooden way that he's asking the infant: "Can I have your soiled diaper so I can throw it at the guy in the back whose sign reads, 'Harper = Less?'

Because that certainly would be correct. He is much less than what Canada needs and deserves. And if there was any doubt about that, he proved it later Thursday night.

Because that's when he broke from his election campaign tradition of only talking to the media once in the day -- early, so reporters could not question him about other issues later in the day raised by other opponents -- to kick Liberal Leader Stephane Dion in the balls.

I know I've said on here before that I didn't think Dion, a Quebecker, can win the Oct. 14 vote because his English is so poor and he's difficult to understand.

But what Harper did and said Thursday night is an absolute act of unfairness, disrespect for all Quebeckers and a total lack of understanding that, right or wrong, whether he agrees or not, Canada has two official languages: French and English.

Harper and his henchmen trotted out a big TV to show the media a taped interview of Dion struggling, during a TV interview conducted in English in Atlantic Canada, to understand what the interviewer was asking.

Go here for the story on it, if you want:

The gist is that the interviewer asked Dion what he would do differently than Harper in response to the financial crisis if he was prime minister today.

He didn't understand the question in English and they required three takes to get it right, after which point the interview apparently went peachy-keen. Dion asked that the earlier takes not be used, and I believe that request was at first granted.

But long-time Canadian Television Network fatboy blowhard Mike Duffy (CTV, I'm pretty sure, supports Harper's Conservatives), aired the whole interview anyway, with Dion's blunders in English included.

So Harper, just magically, obtained the videotape Thursday night and showed it to the national media here in Winnipeg.

He claimed if Dion couldn't answer such a simple question, it showed how he was unfit to be prime minister.

This is the lowest of blows. A person's intelligence and ability to deal with an issue like this doesn't depend on their grasp or difficulty with speaking English, French, Swahili or Martian.

They might have trouble communicating their idea to the majority of people in the country, but that DOESN'T mean they're unfit to address the issue and solve the problem.

In fact, they may be far better able to handle such a crisis than a redneck dipstick like Harper, whose lead in the polls has dropped as his minority government has shown little understanding or compassion to the people over the crisis.

Just like his right-wing rowdy in America, John McCain, Harper is going into full attack mode with below the belt attacks that show both of them to be desperate, shallow and what they think might be opportunistic.

What it is, is classless. The people of Quebec, all French-speaking Canadians across the country and all Canadians should be appalled. I hope Dion wins. And he'll be getting my vote to help him do that.


  1. I've always had little tolerance for that kind of behaviour - and not just in politics. I have little respect for someone who has to put someone else down in order to elevate themselves. Jack Layton did this during the debate (mentioned previously) and I was very disappointed in him. Classless is definitely the right word for this kind of behaviour.

    I'll also be voting Liberal because I don't want the Conservatives to get a majority vote and none of the other parties stand a chance.

  2. So you want someone that does not understand a basic, very simple question running our country? There are no do-overs in international negotiations.

    Can you imagine Dion dealing with Russia about our resources in the north? Russia would end up taking over everything but Quebec, and only because they don't want it.

  3. Anna:

    It really IS intolerance and desperation. I mean, there's political rhetoric/opportunism and then there's the great beyond.


    Well of course your blog profile is hidden so I have no idea who I'm talking to.

    A couple of things...

    The government has these people -- they're called translators. They know Russian, they know French, they know English.

    They know whatever language you can name.

    If Dion was leading Canada, and if because his first language is French he did not understand a question or important point made to a group in English, Dutch, Icelandic, Russian or Yiddish, he would have it properly translated for him so he could make an appropriate decision.

    He didn't have the benefit of a translator in that TV interview.

    Despite Harper's ridiculous comment that this issue was NOT about language, it was ALL about language.

    Your contentions and opinions are yours to hold. But like Harper himself, I think they're hollow and absurd.

  4. He is SUCH a loser. He has that same, vacant look in his eyes that Bush has, have you noticed? Like they're racking their brain cell furiously in an attempt to come up with what someone who has morals/ethics might say if asked the same question.

    Are the Conservatives muzzling their tribe in MB the way they are here?

  5. Dion is a University Prof so nobody thinks that he is not intelligent.

    The dynamics of living in a bilingual country where only 6.7 M people/22.7% of the Canadian population claim French as their primary language, is that the uneasy truce of forced bilingualism is always percolating just under the surface.

    Harper learned how to communicate en Francais so he does have the high ground. The real issue is that the dream of an equal partnership of French & English was fine for UPPER Canada but the further West that you travel the more resistance there is to this policy.

    In order to preserve their culture, Kebeckers enjoy a monopoly on language rights that irks the rest of the country as well as other policies.

    Luckily most of the separatist ideology of the previous generations is fading and modern Quebecois want to concentrate on Health and Education and the same obstacles that all Canadians face...but on their own terms.

    Now that the Economic power is shifting to the West Harper and his wonks simply want to point out that they are playing by the Easterners' rules and still winning.

    When the Chinese Canadian or Indian Canadian populations outnumber the French Canadians then what happens?

    I still believe that Trudeau invoked the process as a show of one upmanship to the Americans..
    look at us we're so progressive.
    I have little doubt that it still could irreparably divide the country...the West will either join the States or become Independent, as would the Maritimes, and UPPER Canada will revert to it's original format.

    The real answer is for all of the Left Of Centre to become ONE party and quit splitting votes...if that happened the Right would never EVER win another election in Canada..EVER!

  6. Pathetic. Very low tactics. Politics, eh? We noticed in the run-out to our most recent federal election - the liberals (who, here, are the right-wingers) were rubbishing the individuals they were opposing, whilst Labour (lefter-wing) were really only talking policy.

  7. Andrea:

    VACANT! I like that. Perfect...

    They DO seem to be muzzling the local Tories here, now that you mention it.

    I think that's just Harper's style. He wants everything going through him, through his lily-white all-knowing PR machine.

    Remember when every official press release or whatever from the Harper-led Tories referred to them as "Canada's New Government?"



    Yeah yeah, well, OK.

    We know that a lot of Canadians, particularly westerners, don't care for the bilingualism thing.

    I find it at least partly ironic that Harper, if he held that much disdain for Quebeckers or for bilingualism, would actually become bilingual himself.

    Wonder why? Political expediency and power, maybe? What could be the advantage?

    You didn't opine on what the post was actually about: Harper's attempts to make a Francophone leader who doesn't speak very good English look bad in order to garner votes.

    In fact, it's almost like you're saying you supported his actions.

    We can argue forever about Quebec's status as a distinct society and about the bilingualism policy, which I've railed against in the past myself.

    The fact is, it's there. It's part of our history. The Chinese and East Indians and the Filipinos aren't. But maybe they'll deserve their own official languages status in the future.

    I just think this was grossly unfair and smacks of the worst political brownie-point mentality.

    We don't deserve Harper any more than the Americans deserved Bush. But we all agree what an arse Bush is, and the Americans got him for two terms.

    So why can't we agree that Harper, even though he will probably win, is also an arse for reaching to these depths to win?

    (P.S.: Your beard makes you look like a voyageur)


    Well, yeah, I think it's pathetic...but as you said, it's politics...

  8. Yeah, that kind of low dirty politics is crap! Character matters when it comes to choosing a leader.

    I wonder if America's intense, dirty politics has seeped into the 'bland' Canadian political scene.

  9. Eroswings:

    I wish we could blame it on America. But we can't.

    Stupidity and shallowness are everywhere. Certainly here too, and I never pretended otherwise.

    It was low and dirty. I just wish Canadians could see it as that. They're too busy watching hockey or something.


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