Many of us who have been watching this government critically would respectfully disagree with the presumption that is being offered up here, in the national media, serving to inoculate Mr. Harper. What relevance is it what campaign officials typically do? They may, in most instances, protect the leader, but so what? It's only relevant what happened here.Ibbitson later babbled thusly:
Of course, all investigatory officials should work on the presumption that the evidence takes them wherever it takes them. It doesn't really need to be said that they should explore all angles without regard for quaint notions of campaign customs. But let's say it anyway. And as we well know, this is not exactly a hands-off guy, Mr. Harper. He knew about the offer to Chuck Cadman. He speaks of having tapes on an opposition leader, presumably to be used during an election or as advertising outside an election.
So there is no factual basis to say we should be reasonably certain that Harper "knew nothing about what was going on in Guelph or elsewhere." Any budding conventional wisdom that Harper had no knowledge of this cheating is not justified.
The Tories dominate federal politics because they are seen as the party that understands the importance of protecting the economy. Critics impale themselves on abuse-of-democracy issues, such as contempt of Parliament, treatment of Afghan detainees, the long-form census. None of that matters in a world where getting and keeping a job is job one.That would have been bad enough even if the harpercons really did understand the economy better than anyone else. The evidence shows that they clearly don't and an honest opinion writer should have included that fact. But Ibbitson didn't so that makes his sin even worse. Check out Impolitical again:
What utter moral bankruptcy and nonsense. Of course democratic issues matter, we're not Canada Inc. And given the widespread election cheating scandal staring us in the face, one can't help but think that maybe if the Harper crew hadn't run roughshod over those issues that Ibbitson enumerates, perhaps becoming emboldened in thinking they can skate on such democratic issues, we wouldn't be dealing with this cheating scandal today.I don't like the Liberal Party of Canada but I like a lot of Liberal bloggers. Most of the time!
Next up is The Sixth Estate, summarizing the most likely harpercon spin-job in all its nauseating glory:
First, they say nothing at all beyond some vague platitudes. This has been the response from the top, including Harper himself. That right there is an implicit admission of guilt, by the way. If the people at the top of the Conservative Party suspected that the robocallers were actually Liberals or NDPers, Harper would be screaming for their heads on a plate. There is mounting evidence that serious crimes were committed. Harper’s mealymouthed assurances that if someone did it, they won’t be allowed to participate in the next election campaign don’t cut it. Either he knows his party is guilty, or he doesn’t actually know what happened but is fairly sure his agents are guilty of something and is desperate not to let whatever it is come out. These are the ramblings of a guilty man we are listening to.What should we do, as bloggers and citizens, about this intolerable, criminal, anti-democratic bullshit? Tell everyone you can that this is intolerable. This is the end of the line. harper couldn't fuck with our elections the same way that fraudsters can in the USA, this is as much as he could get away with and he did it. It's time to defeat this piece of shit. He doesn't respect Parliament and he doesn't respect elections. Very well then. I don't respect his election and I don't respect his claims to parliamentary authority.
The second step is to blame the Liberals and mention the sponsorship scandal as often as possible.
And thus the Conservatives turn to their third claim: that we must not imperil the vaunted “economic recovery.” Operative Tim Powers has already been trotted out to advance this line, claiming that the opposition parties are just trying to “create a scandal” when “we (should be) talking about the economy.” According to Powers, you see, economic policy is more important than whether or not our country is a democracy under the rule of law.
* As if the RCMP is going to do anything against their precious harpercons! Their top brass might have to deal with the unprofessional screaming tantrums of whatever third-rate party hack harper appoints as a "hard-nosed reformer" of that corrupted institution, but the whole staff knows how their bread is buttered. Tory times are "thump therapy" times.