Monday, April 09, 2007

Andre Coyne on Stephen Harper

Here are a couple of tidbits from Andrew Coyne.

First is from his his blog, a post entitled Welcome, Tory partisans!

I never cease to marvel at the blind partisanship of some of the commenters on this site. There doesn't seem to be anything Harper and Co. could do that could shake your faith: no budget so profligate, no promise so broken, no principle so abandoned, no pandering so overt, no Quebec strategy so failed, no rhetoric so inflammatory. But I had not realized quite how far you were willing to go until now.

Read more

The second is from his National Post column, and it's called Harper has learned well.

So we are left to conclude that it does not matter to him whether anyone believes him or not. And if it does not matter to him, this must be because he believes it does not matter to anyone else. At the very least, he must have calculated, there is no political price to be paid for telling the public obvious untruths. It may even be that we prefer it. That is the rational implication, and he is nothing if not rational. What is more, he is probably right.

He concludes:

It is a lesson that Mr. Harper appears to have absorbed. The Emerson and Fortier appointments were early harbingers, the two free-spending budgets and the "nation" resolution further signs that nothing Mr. Harper had said on these matters throughout his career should be taken at face value. And if these could be excused as the inevitable adjustments in the face of political reality, or even as signs of maturity, what are we to make of the pledge not to tax income trusts, or to cap equalization payments?

Read the whole article.

You see, fervent ideology is not the only problem with Harper. I fully acknowledge that he is smart, and by that I mean he is devious. He is clearly not above compromising on clearly held political or economic principles in order to pander to the electorate. He is also clearly not above playing with the truth where it suits him. He as well is clearly not above slandering the opposition, instead of taking the high road, which one would think would be the prime ministerial thing to do. Why behave like a bully instead of letting your record speak for itself? Desperation.

What all this means, among other things, is that the electorate is not getting an accurate picture of Harper and what a majority government in all likelihood would bring.

More to come.